Take a deep breath, think about questions below:
What is your dream job, regardless of money, skills, experience, or education?
When you were little, do you remember what job you wanted to do?
Now, think about your ideal job and have more details (type, location, industry, people).
Job is more than a job. It takes a significant amount of time in our lives. It is related to self-esteem, independence and security. Job satisfaction is closely related to our well-being and mental health. A toxic/stressful job may lead to sleep trouble, mood disorder, anxiety and depression.
Besides SWOT (refer self awareness blog), think about what you are good at, what you enjoy doing, and the job market. Is there a sweet spot where three sectors come to cross?
Moreover, it is helpful to take some personality tests to understand possible matching jobs better.
According to Sarah Archer,
CAREER HAPPINESS = (Freedom + challenge + balance – stress) x meaning
We can regularly do a review, rating each factor from 0-10 where 10 is the highest, to see how much your career happiness score is. Where there is room to improve.
For example, this job offers flexibility in terms of hours and location, so 8 out of 10. For some 9-5 on-site jobs, it will lower the score. In addition, if you have supportive coworkers to help each other, it improves your score.
The job has a certain level of challenge and risk of burnout, so the challenge is 5.
Balance: have time to take care of ourselves, self-care, 8.
Stress: is the stress level is we can handle? Let’s say 3.
Meaning: do you feel your job has a purpose? Help the world to become a little bit better place? You help people even one by one, day by one. Let’s rate 7.
So now let’s see how it goes: (freedom 8+challenge 5+balance 8-stress 3)*meaning 7=126.
We could make some adjustments. If the meaning drops to 5, the score will be only 90. We can see meaning is very important.
If stress goes up to 6, the meaning remains at 7, the score drops to 105.
In sum, an ideal job offers high freedom, balance, and the right amount (people have a different levels of tolerance) of challenge and stress. You feel your job is meaningful and has a positive impact.
Think about the control pie, it is hard to be liked, and like all coworkers, not every boss is supportive and not bossy. But we still can be proactive about creating our career happiness. It can feel scary to change the job. We can prepare and get detailed plans for making changes if your current job is miserable, like your job is just a survival job.
Regarding different industries or fields, choose the one you like. The passion or meaning can help you get through a hard time. Again, every industry can be competitive. If you’ve chased money over meaning, it might not help you sustain for a long period.
Hope you enjoy what you are doing. I have a wide range of working experiences, including public service, multicultural company, start-up, and self employee. I am helping clients level up and advance, finding career happiness.