When your job becomes painful.

in happiness.

When what you’re doing causes you pain, do something else. If that were as easy to do as it is to say, we’d have much happier people on the planet.


Here is what we know: it’s not as easy to do something else as it sounds. However, it can be easier if we have a plan.

The plan, while not right for everyone as is, should look a little something like this:

  1. Figure out how to let go of some pride and get some gratitude. Yes, your job sucks. Perhaps your job causes anxiety, stress, or even illness because you just can’t stand what you’re doing. Letting go of pride means being okay with the fact that you played a big part in where you are today. Say to yourself, “so what?” Onward. Everyone makes choices they wish they had not made. Increasing gratitude means being thankful that you’re not standing in the unemployment queue or worse, living with someone else because you can’t keep a roof over your head. Those folks have it a little worse off than you do.
  2. Start looking for something else. If you’re thinking or talking a lot about how you’d rather be doing something else, now is the time to take action. For the most part, you cannot find something you’re not looking for. Most things in life happen because we actively took a step in that direction, whether we realized it at the time or not.
  3. Embrace the idea of change. Misery is quite content where it is. If you are miserable, perhaps… just perhaps… you’re actually okay with the misery. You’ve figured a way to work around it. Think hard about that. Because the truth is that if you look in the mirror and don’t like what you see but do nothing about it, maybe it’s not as bad to you as you make it sound. Maybe there’s something comfortable about your misery. Guess what? It’s never going to change, then. If you hate your work, you need to come to terms with the fact that something is going to have to change. Primarily: YOU.

There are no other steps in the plan. Once you have let go of your pride, found some gratitude, begun to look for other work, and are okay with the idea of change in your life, you WILL find something else. Or, you may discover the source of the pain and take steps to get away from it. I believe our bodies and spirits were not designed to endure pain for long. Our minds, however, need a lot of work.

Image Credit: AdA Duren

James Thompson @ Celtics Fans November 3, 2012 at 12:53 am

I need my job to have a view of that sunset. ๐Ÿ˜‰ In all seriousness, one other suggestion for the list is not to quit your old job until you definitely have a new one.

Jen October 29, 2012 at 12:22 am

I can totally relate to this. 4 years ago, I passed the Nursing board exam and then I went onto training. I was hired as a clinical instructor in my alma mater. But I wasn’t happy at everything that was happening in my life. Nursing was not even my choice, it was my mother’s. Anyway, it was so hard for me to let go in the first place since I didn’t know where to go and what to do outside that nursing core that I was in. And I was seeing my friends and colleagues striving to do better, to get that experience to be able to work abroad. It was like everyone was competing for success in the field. I didn’t want to get left behind so I pursued to stay and work in my field. But I finally let go of it 2 years ago. I just can’t do it any further. I wasn’t happy. What I did was I devoted my time to landing any opportunity online. It took me 1 month to land that online career. I love computers. In fact, I was supposed to take IT back in college, which my mother strongly disapproved. Now, I am still working online and I am enjoying every bit of it.

Dee October 28, 2012 at 10:53 am

Not being able to break the cycle of no.3 (misery) means the rest can’t be actioned and that’s probably why people get depressed!

Stacey October 27, 2012 at 3:43 am

Consider freelancing as an option before making any rash decisions about your job long term. I’ve found over the years that the odd freelance job has really helped me to get that little bit of satisfaction when my job has become frustrating at times.

wired October 21, 2012 at 7:59 pm

yes you have to find other jobs that makes you happy but in this time very hard times … you need to wait and see first before.. trying to look for other jobs that is very scarce right now

mdehsan@Sarkari Nakuri October 19, 2012 at 2:56 am

very nice flower

mdehsan@Sarkari Nakuri October 19, 2012 at 2:55 am

Start looking for something elseโ€
very nice

shakil October 15, 2012 at 9:00 am

My suggestion is do whatever you like. Just follow your heart. A boring job is like nightmare.

Tia Peterson October 21, 2012 at 12:14 pm

I agree, Shakil!

Joe Clark October 14, 2012 at 9:01 am

The “Start looking for something else” option is good and it could be best if you have good writing or graphic designing skills, you can simply start your own work and be your own boss. ๐Ÿ™‚

Tia Peterson October 21, 2012 at 12:14 pm


Justin October 14, 2012 at 5:16 am

I beg to differ. There is no room for “maybe”, probability, likely or other adjectives to assign blame on the job.

It’s all in our brains, the neuro-physiological response at play. Don’t take it out the job, if we are getting a raw deal” on the performance and extrinsic rewards/motivation.

“Be the change you seek in the world”. People who believe and subscribe to this will not see the state and events in life as boredom or uninteresting. No one can take anything from us unless and until we surrender it, including respect, happiness, boredom and other energy draining feelings. Just imagine, if we could lead the way in planting the seed of self-accountability whenever faced against problem that are within our domain of control and influence. We could have a multiplication effect of humility and proactiveness against finger pointing, apathy and dysfunctional cultures.

We could, if we chose to, have that dream job by making the best use of what we have, in hand. As Stephen Covey says, leadership is a choice.

Tia Peterson October 15, 2012 at 12:25 pm

I don’t think finding a job that suits you is blaming anything on the job.

Joe S. October 13, 2012 at 8:15 pm

WOW!!! Thanks for this read. i will have to share this post with my wife. If I didn’t know any better I would say you interviewed her before you wrote this. She hates what she is currently doing and wants out. She tries her best to be grateful being that her income assists us in providing for our family but at times it is hard.

I will share this post with her.


Tia Peterson October 21, 2012 at 12:15 pm

Thanks, Joe. Did you share it with her. What did she think?

CreditDonkey October 13, 2012 at 5:11 am

Hi Tia,
Yes, it’s really quite easy to say but hard to do. I think fear is what stops most people from leaving the job they hated, thinking that they may not find one soon enough or find something better.
Having a plan is really important in this situation. Being in control and knowing that you can do something can make the change that much easier.

Tia Peterson October 21, 2012 at 12:16 pm

Fear is the factor there – people are afraid to move on or make changes.

Sammy October 12, 2012 at 10:49 am

I’ll admit it, when people felt miserable about their job I was the first to tell’em “well, simply get another one”. Easy for me to say since I was quite happy with mine. When management changed and things became ugly quick, I noticed that it is NOT that simple. It took a whole year before I made a plan and left that company for good. I will never tell anyone again that changing a painful job is the easiest thing to do. But taking the steps you posted one at a time makes it a lot easier.

Tia Peterson October 21, 2012 at 12:16 pm

I agree. It IS hard. That’s why more people don’t do it.

Nadeem Khan October 12, 2012 at 3:59 am

“Start looking for something else” — this is abosultely correct. Looking for alternatives not only soothes you up a bit but it also boosts your confidence that this is not the end of the world and there is a whole universe of ooportunities waiting for you somewhere else.

Adam @ New Body Blog October 11, 2012 at 10:29 am

When it becomes painfull just quit it. I did only five days ago and it’s great. Now the worries come into the picture…

Ammy Vega Darya October 9, 2012 at 11:37 am

thanks for the advices!

I’ve read some books that related on it..

what most important job is when we find the job that we love..

if we have a job, even with high salary but we don’t like it, it can be boring..

Coversure October 8, 2012 at 4:38 am

Hmm. I’m half way there. I’ve been in the same job for 6 and a half years now and it’s really starting to wear, however, it pays well and my boss is good which is something to be thankful for.
I’ve decided (for now atleast) to try a different tack. I am trying to make my homelife much more fulfilling, which I’m hoping will give me the patience to put up with job, because it pays for the rest of what I do in life. Of course, it might just make being at work worse…

micheael steyn October 7, 2012 at 4:47 am

at the time of recession what opportunity we have just grab it whether its of our caliber or not it does not matter end of the day the thing that matter is R we employed

Kelly October 6, 2012 at 2:06 pm

This is wear I’m at right now. I quit the job I hated because I just couldn’t do it anymore and took a break. Now I’m trying to figure out what I want to do now. It can get really overwhelming, not really at the age to make any major mistakes when it comes to career. I have to remind myself everyday to take it one day at a time or I go crazy.

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