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What To Do If You Hate Your Job

Published: Jun 29, 2016
What To Do If You Hate Your Job

What do you do if you hate your job? This is a tough question to answer.

Your job is a huge part of your life, and when you hate your job, it affects so many other parts of your life, like your own happiness or your relationships.

That anger and frustration consumes you.

Sunday nights are spent dreading the week ahead. Each morning when you wake up, you’re miserable and would rather do anything but go to work.

Having to commute every single day to a place that you hate is just an awful way to spend your life.

It’s simple for me to say “just quit and find a new job”, but most people don’t have that kind of luxury.

Plus, I can pretty much guarantee that you’ve already thought of that, life isn’t always that simple.

The first thing I’ll say to you is that I genuinely feel for you.

I’m fortunate enough now to be in a place that I love, but of course I’ve been there before.

I’ve had those days where every chance I had was spent on Indeed or Monster looking for jobs, where I called in sick one too many times, where I’d spend most of my car ride cursing.

I was a genuinely negative person.

Truth be told, I really struggled when I hated my job. I was drinking heavily, eating horribly, and really let myself go. I gained about 20 pounds and was really not in a good place mentally.

So I get it. I’ve been there before, and it’s not an easy place to be.

One positive thing to keep mind that might help is knowing that you’re not alone.


Only about 33% of US workers are engaged at work, and worldwide the number hovers around 13%. That’s incredibly sad.

Tips For When You Hate Your Job

The best piece of advice I can give you (and this is much easier said than done) is to focus on your happiness outside of work. Don’t let work consume you. Life is too short to be unhappy, so you need to find ways to stay sane.

Here are a few ideas of what you can do if you hate your job.

  1. Discover What You Don’t Like

    This is a very important first step. You need to really take some time to figure out what aspect of your job you actually hate and then from there, figure out what you need to do to improve it.

    Is it low pay? Is it the fact that you don’t have enough career advancement? Is it your boss? Your coworkers?

    Once you’ve figured out the root of the issue, you’ll be in a much better position to figure out how to fix it.

  2. Work On Your Cover Letter And Resume

    You’ll likely be already doing this, but there are a few important tips to keep in mind.

    For your cover letter:

    For your resume:

    This post that I wrote called 4 Lessons That Got Me My Dream Jobbreaks down the exact steps I used to land my job at Officevibe, and includes the exact cover letter I sent. Feel free to use it as a template for your own cover letter.

    • Keep it short. No one has time to read an essay from you. 2-3 paragraphs max.
    • Use conversational language. Pretend you were writing this to a friend.
    • Personalize it and explain why you would be good for the specific job
    • Put the focus on the employer and not you. Instead of “I did X” say “You’re looking for someone that can do X, I think I can help because in the past I’ve done Y”
    • Use bullet points and remove all fluff. Recruiters spend 6 seconds looking at your resume, remember that.
    • Ideally post accomplishments like “Increased sales by 25% within my first year”
    • Don’t include interests/hobbies or references. Again, keep it short.
  3. Spend Your Time At Work Wisely

    Instead of wasting your days on Facebook or browsing the internet, why not use the time as a way to build up new skills for a new job?

    Take advantage of the time there to learn new skills on websites like Udemy, Skillshare, General Assembly and Khan Academy.

    You can even ask your current employer if they pay for training and take advantage of those resources.

    The point is to not waste your time, and use those moments to build up skills that will help you land an even better job.

  4. Find Positivity Outside Of Work

    This is the key to not letting your bad job ruin your life.

    Try and find ways to enjoy your life outside of work and do things that will make you happier.

    Read more, exercise, meditate. Do anything that will help you improve your mental wellbeing.

    You need to be grateful for what you have in life.

    One of the simplest ways to increase your happiness and make you realize that your life/job isn’t so bad is to do the “three good things” exercise.

    At the end of each day, write down three good things that happened to you that day, no matter how small they may seem.

    The goal is to allow you to reflect on the positive aspects of your day, and with each day, start to look at life more positively.

  5. Start Networking

    Build up your connections for when you’re really ready to make a move and to find great opportunities.

    Using websites like Eventbrite or Meetup, you can find local events to network. You can also create your own events if there aren’t any that suit your needs, that could be a great idea to make new connections.

    I’d also recommend getting very active on Linkedin. If you’re worried about your boss seeing your activity on Linkedin, here is how you can stay private.

    Click your thumbnail on the top right > Privacy & Settings > Privacy


  6. De-Invest Emotionally

    This is easier said than done, but it’s important not to get too caught up in your work. If sales are slow or a process is bothering you, don’t think about it. It’s not your problem, it’s not your company.

    Sorry for promoting such a harsh attitude, but your personal happiness is more important than worrying about something that’s not in your control.

    Try to remember that hopefully, this job is only temporary and you have a great life outside of work to be happy about (good friends, good family, etc.).

  7. Have A Good Support Network

    Get some support from your family and friends, and learn to appreciate the moments you have with them.

    Remember that life isn’t so bad, and be happy to be alive.

    You can’t get back that time you’ll miss with your family or friends, so make sure to take full advantage while you can.