Work is an unavoidable part of life for most of us, and those with a full-time job are spending a good chunk of their days locked in the dance of needing money versus having a life. Sometimes that dance gets tiresome and feels as though the grind is sucking us dry.
Work can sometimes be a drag, but if it feels like a waste of life, it might be time to make a change or two. Consider any unique contributions, and whether the job is interfering with overall happiness and how much of that hard-earned money is being spent on things instead of experiences.
Consider the Contributions
Those who contribute something unique can feel good about their positions, or at least use that idea as a fallback when it gets hard to stay. Looking at ways that the work matters to the world or to the few people it helps can also bridge the gap between feeling purposeless and feeling accomplished. Or maybe the work can help push toward a larger goal so that it's contributing to the larger good of a longterm plan.
Does the work play a role in fulfilling something longer term? But of course, for those who feel they are not contributing anything unique at work, and that the work isn't doing anything for them, well, it could be a waste of time...and perhaps it's time to move on.
Consider Overall Happiness
Does the job pay for something that contributes to health, wellbeing, or overall happiness? Even if the job itself doesn't bring joy, the contribution of funding to things that do, shouldn't be overlooked. of course, we spend a good portion of our lives at the workplace, so if we're not happy there, it may be time for a change.
Life’s too short to be miserable all the time. Even if it means attending night school to finally get that degree or accepting a pay cut to work at a job that’s more fulfilling, happiness ultimately needs to be a priority.
A feeling of imbalance may come from working toward an early grave in the interest of the newest phone or the sweetest ride. Consider whether the work hours, which are really life hours, are worth trading for that gadget. Is having the latest and greatest worth more than the time you spent earning all that money to pay for it? We’ve fallen into a culture that creates enormous pressure to continuously one-up each other — and that’s probably a big part of our problem.
Think about all the living we could afford to do if we weren’t wasting all our income on unnecessary upgrades. What incredible, exciting adventures have we left unchecked on our collective bucket lists? W
Work is probably a waste if the proceeds continuously go toward things instead of experiences. Consider making every minute of that workweek count by making more meaningful investments. Make memories. Live. So that the work hours are a tradeoff for the life that shines bright and warms the soul.
Work isn’t a waste for those who are making unique or important contributions, doing what they’re skilled at and passionate about, or spending the earnings on meaningful activities. Those 40-plus hours are unavoidable for most of us, but that doesn’t mean they have to be a total loss. Life won’t pass without note as long as we embrace what we need from it.