How to Find Meaning in your Job and Work Happily?
In a study by the University of Oxford, call centre staff who feel happy at work are 13% more productive than those who aren’t happy. Another study found that companies with a happy and engaged workforce have outperformed their competition by 20%.
Happy employees are more productive in accomplishing their duties. They are also more engaged in supporting the company’s success. At this point in your career journey, ask yourself:
- Do you look forward to going to work? Or does it fill you with dread?
- Does your job bring a sense of fulfilment? Or have you lost that “spark” that drives you?
If you feel unhappy and your work has become meaningless, here are tips to help you get back on the right track:
1. Know your worth
Perhaps the source of your unhappiness is from internal factors that are affecting your work. It’s important to nurture your self-worth rather than attaching your value to your job alone. Take the time to focus on what gives your life meaning, beyond your work. This, in turn, will encourage you to be the best version of yourself in every aspect.
2. Align your values to your purpose at work
Unhappiness can stem from the misalignment of your values to the work culture. Reflect on what’s important to you: family, relationships, education, career development, financial stability, or a secure future. Does your job help support the values that you hold dear? Does your work drive you to fulfil your purpose? Understand your values in relation to your work. This will guide you in finding the inspiration to feel happy with what you’re doing.
3. Be a positive influence
Maintaining a professional relationship with your co-workers is one thing. Strengthen this connection by helping to create positive experiences when interacting with them. Having strong relationships can enhance your sense of meaning to others. Recall the valuable contributions that you’ve made in the company. Realise the effect of your presence on your colleagues. Support them in their time of need to the best of your abilities. Be respectful with one another. Motivate each other, especially during challenging times. Going beyond yourself to help others will give more meaning to your life.
4. Reward yourself
Employees find meaning in their work when their achievements are recognised by the company. But why not give yourself a pat on the back as well? If you know you’ve done your best in a challenging project, then go ahead and give yourself a treat! Even if it’s a small self-reward, it can boost your enthusiasm and your pride for your work.
5. Manage your reaction to stress
Stressful situations can suck the happiness in the workplace. Overlapping projects, toxic office politics, and tight deadlines are just some of the incidents that can trigger your stress. You need to make an effort to learn stress management techniques. Focus on the time you spend on your projects. Ask for help if the workload is too much. Learn to say “NO” to additional tasks if you’re overloaded already. Manage how you feel about distractions. For more tips on how to manage stress in the workplace, you can read more here.
6. Engage in meaningful conflict
Differences of opinion are bound to happen when working with others. Conflict may arise and can create a negative situation. Most people would rather avoid it, as it could impact their current and future status. But if it’s handled properly, conflict can become an opportunity to resolve long-standing concerns. Address the issue honestly. Engage with respect and positive communication. Compromise when necessary. Ultimately, conflict resolutions should work towards creating meaningful change. It could even lead to new opportunities for career growth.
7. Take the initiative towards career progress
Be proactive with your career development. If you’re not satisfied anymore, have a conversation with your manager. Perhaps you need new challenges to help you find meaning at work. If the company offers learning programs, take full advantage of them. Being able to accomplish new tasks can broaden your work opportunities. More importantly, you’ll take pride in knowing that you have great potential to level-up.
8. Try mindful meditation
You might be feeling overwhelmed with everything that’s going on at work. Studies have shown that mindful meditation has been proven to make people feel more emotionally stable at work. Mindfulness lets you be fully present of where you are and what you’re doing, without overly reacting to it. There are different kinds of mindful meditation to help you focus, such as breathing exercises or walking meditation. Choose one that works best to help you feel happier at work.
9. De-clutter your workspace
Sometimes, what’s keeping you from feeling happy could be the physical work area itself. If your workspace is cluttered and messy, take time to clean it up. Organise your files and office supplies. Dispose or give away what you no longer need. Learn to keep your desk neat and tidy. Add a personal decor that complements the overall professional appearance of your work area.
10. Find a job that allows work-life balance
When all else fails, perhaps it’s time for you to move on to a different company. Yes, better compensation and benefits should be considered when you’re evaluating your employment options. But remember why you’re leaving in the first place. If you’re no longer happy with your current work, find a job with a company that lets you live the life you want outside of work.
In the pursuit of happiness and meaning in the workplace, it’s unavoidable that you will encounter some challenges along the way. Taking certain risks may put you in a difficult situation at first. But the rewards you’ll reap could be far greater. To quote psychologist and author Paul Bloom, “It is the suffering that we choose that affords the most opportunity for pleasure, meaning, and personal growth.”
The trusted recruitment agency for workforce management in Vietnam
The Talent Consultants is an industry-leading talent acquisition consultant in Ho Chi Minh City. We understand the needs of both employers and employees for optimum engagement in the workplace. Multinational businesses have come to trust our talent sourcing expertise for highly qualified candidates across the Southeast Asian region.
We offer free online resources to share our workforce management and job interview tips. You can also browse through our blogs for more insights on recruitment, employee engagement, and other HR-related topics. For additional information on how to keep your employees happy, you can read more about it here.
Contact us on +84 28 7309 7991 or book a free consultation with us here if you would like to experience the benefits of having the best candidates to work for you. For job seekers, visit our job vacancies page to explore better opportunities for career development.