Every morning, it's the same thing. You hit the snooze button over and over, not because you're worn out from a weekend of partying, but because you dread the thought of yet another week at a job you hate.
You can't bear the thought of sitting through the Monday morning meeting with that product manager who, after three years, still pronounces your name wrong. Or spending all day updating Excel spreadsheets that your boss never even looks at. And you're just itching to finish the mockup for your friend's site since you've realized that your real passion is Web design.
Since doing a table flip while belting out the chorus to "I Will Survive" isn't terribly professional (as fun as it sounds), here are three ways you can take charge of the situation. Read on and soon you'll be saying "Yay!" instead of "Yuck!" when your alarm goes off in the morning.
1. Make a Shift
Time to switch it up! Instead of slogging away with those useless spreadsheets, why not ask your boss if you can try something new? Maybe you could pitch a short-term project, or swap tasks with a coworker who is also looking for some variety. The change in routine alone could be enough to make your job more tolerable. But, hopefully, you'll also get to:
Pick something interesting: By offering to do the company email newsletter, you'll be doing something much closer to your passion (in this case, Web design). And that, of course, means it's much more likely you'll enjoy doing it.
Learn something new: If your new project is outside of your typical scope of work, you'll have a chance to learn new skills. And that means you might find a new interest (for example, an interest in programming that you discover while learning to update the company's WordPress site). Plus, you'll make yourself more valuable to the company — and future employers! — in the process.
2. Start a Side Hustle
Let’s say your boss didn't jump at your idea of making a shift, or it's just not possible to change things up at your job. So, you'll need to find some extra time outside of work for a "side hustle" or passion project that you can eventually turn into a full-time gig. To be successful with an outside project, remember to:
Schedule it: After a day at your boring 9-to-5, you might be tempted to spend the evening with Benedict Cumberbatch, rather than designing websites or creating a Web app. Don't leave your side hustle to chance! Schedule regular times on your calendar and follow through. It won't be easy giving up Saturday shopping sprees for Saturday coding marathons, but it'll be so worth it — for your sanity, your career, and (if it's a paid gig even your bank balance.
Love it: Your destiny is in your own hands. Take advantage of this by choosing a project that you're truly enthusiastic about. Virtually anything can be turned into a moneymaking venture, or at least a resume builder (like volunteer work or charity projects). Follow your dream and get started with that amazing Tex-Mex vegetarian cooking blog you've been crafting in your head all these years.
3. Move On
If changing your current responsibilities or working on your own project are out of the question, you need to get serious about searching for a new job, or better yet, being your own boss. It sounds scary, but it's always easier and safer to look for a new job while you're still employed. Start here:
Update your presence: If you're starting your own business, remember that potential employers or clients look at more than just your resume. Keep your LinkedIn profile up-to-date, and focus on other social media as well. Your presence on Twitter, Google+, and even Facebook, Pinterest, Tumblr, etc. can affect your job search, so make sure it's for better and not for worse. And, if you want to go the extra mile, spruce up that old blog of yours or maybe start one to show off the skills you want to use in your new position.
Put yourself out there: Even if your new Web design agency will be a one-person operation run from your home office, you can't do it alone. Both looking for a new job and starting a new business mean going out into the world and finding the person who could be your future employer, colleague, client, or partner. The more people you meet, the better your chances are of finding the ones that you'd love to work with (and who actually care about how your name is pronounced!). So, go that that writers' club, get involved in the local charity teaching tech skills to high schoolers, join the professional marketing organization, or try out a hackathon for newbies. You're sure to at least find some new friends who share your passion. And, most likely, you'll make that contact that helps you go from bored at work to loving what you do!
So, next time you are feeling mind-numbingly bored at your job, try to shake up your current responsibilities either inside or outside the office. You won’t regret it!
Adda Birnir is a member of the DailyWorth Connect program. Read more about the program here.