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Get Unstuck at Work

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Why do some feel stuck in their job while others love theirs? It’s easy to find two people working in the same company feeling each way. One feels trapped, and the other finds enjoyment. What creates this difference? Let’s find out!

Why do some feel stuck?

Some time back, I ran across the following wisdom that explains why some of us feel stuck in our jobs.

“If your work is work to you and you don’t see beyond that work and see the pleasure in work and the pleasure in service, look out; you are in danger of standing in your present station for a long, long time.” Milan R. Bump (1881–1924)

Who hasn’t heard it said that loving your work leads to a better life? It only makes sense. Notice that Bump indirectly provides a solution for someone who does not enjoy their work. He says, “You can find pleasure in serving on your job by looking beyond your work.”

When you can’t see the good your work leads to, it’s no wonder you don’t enjoy it. Only looking at your work in the near term can be difficult. But when you look at your current job as a brief period in your career that will pass and lead to a better life, you can learn to enjoy it.

When you only look at what you are doing and not where you are going: “…you are in danger of standing in your present station for a long, long time….”

You can get stuck by not looking beyond your work to its pleasure. Those who often complain about their work or say they do not enjoy it can wind up stuck doing the same thing for many years.

I had a friend who was like this. He complained so much he saw no hope for tomorrow and remained in the same line of work his entire career. Two parts of every career are longevity and opportunity. While he had longevity, he sabotaged his chances for opportunity because of his attitude. Maybe profession or vocation would be a better word to describe his work instead of calling it a career.

As Bump noted, he could not see beyond his work and found no pleasure in the work and service he provided. Could a simple thing like not enjoying your work, not seeing the good or opportunity in it, keep you stuck in your job? You bet it could. Most of us know people in similar situations.

Getting unstuck

The solution to this problem of getting stuck is obvious, isn’t it? You can change jobs and try to find work you enjoy, or you can change your attitude and find enjoyment in your work. While changing jobs is an option, you will find more of the same in the next job if you don’t change your attitude.

Changing your attitude will put you on a different track, getting you unstuck. How can you do this? It’s a simple matter of appreciation. What are some things you can appreciate about your job?

Why not learn to be thankful for:

  • having a job. Not everyone is employed. Consider yourself fortunate.

  • steady and stable employment.

  • being able to provide for your family and yourself.

  • whatever freedom exists in your work.

  • allowing you to be a productive member of society.

  • relationships with the people you work with and for.

  • for your competitors creating an environment where everyone improves and produces better products and services.

  • being able to apply your skills in a useful and positive way.

  • being able to learn while sharpening your skills and gaining new abilities.

  • the products and services your company offers in the marketplace.

  • the service you provide to the company and its customers.

This short list contains only a few things you can be thankful for. What others can you add?

The more you are thankful for and appreciate at work, the more you will enjoy it. This appreciation will naturally create more opportunities and a better future.

Final thoughts

By looking beyond your work, you can find pleasure in it. If you cannot see beyond the work as “work,” you may be stuck doing what you are doing for a long time. Why not shift your attitude and seek the good in what you do? It will help you find greater enjoyment and appreciation for your job and how it serves your purpose in life.

You can learn to see your work differently if you wish. Look at how much you have learned during your life and how you have changed and grown. By changing how you view your work, your entire life can improve. Why not give it a try? What do you have to lose?

If you take one thing away from this article, I hope you realize you will grow fonder of anything you appreciate. In other words, what you appreciate appreciates. Remember, the opposite is also true — the value of what you do not appreciate depreciates, whether a job, a person, or something material. It is a universal rule and applies to all.

What can you begin to appreciate today?


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