How do I stay sane at a job I hate?
November 29, 2010 10:02 AM Subscribe
How do I stay sane at a job I hate? I am desperately unhappy in my current job and have been looking for something else. It's taking awhile though... how do I keep from jumping out the figurative window?
posted by anonymous to Work & Money (14 answers total) 13 users marked this as a favorite
I have been looking for a new job for a year now. I live in a small city in the Northeast. I have a graduate-level education. I've been networking and doing informational interviews and everything I can think of to squeeze in during non-work time.* I've had a few interviews but nothing has panned out. I have consulted with people on how to improve my resume (it's fine) and whether there is anything different I should be doing during interviews (not really). I've kind of resigned myself to the fact that The Economy + Where I Live are just not conducive to finding something new quickly.
But I despise my job right now. My work consists of doing things that the proverbial college intern usually does. I type things that I had no input into the creation of. I guess I thought that I'd be doing something a little more involved after all the time and effort I've expended in education. The worst part is that one of my bosses is also a graduate of one of the same grad schools I went to and he's the worst about giving me the secretarial stuff** to do. I have no authority to create billable work, but I get reprimanded for creating non-billable work (the stuff I thought I was getting hired to do). I don't have enough to do, but I still have to figure out how to fill in my time sheet each week.
I could go on, but, long story short, the atmosphere is dysfunctional, the work is dismal, and the pay is nothing special. One of my co-workers just quit for a new job a few weeks ago and had many of the same issues I did (which made me feel ever so slightly better that I wasn't a big baby for not being happy here).
But until I find something new, I can't quit. I have a small family and we have a house and bills that need to be paid. Things are very tenuous financially right now due to my husband having to take a pay cut a few months ago at his workplace.
I'm trying to stay optimistic that something better is around the corner, but every day I feel my insides clench up as I enter and I dread every work day. I've lost confidence in myself and my abilities and it's affecting my non-work life. Moving to a different place with possibly more opportunity is not really an option right now.
And I know I'm supposed to be happy that I "have a job at all" these days.*** But most of the time I feel like telling my daughter (who can't understand yet) that she too can excel at school and college and beyond and maybe she can also have the wonderful opportunity to type stuff for old men. Yes, I'm starting to get bitter.
What can I do to stop feeling so awful and try to make it through this time? What am I not doing right in my job search? Will any of you at least commiserate with me and tell me it will all be ok in the end??
Throwaway email account at email@example.com
*I do have a small child and I also do freelance work.
** There is nothing wrong with secretarial stuff, but I didn't think that's what I was getting hired to do.
*** And yes, the one nice thing is that I can secretly post my laments to AskMe during work hours (BUT HOW WILL I FILL IN THIS NON-BILLABLE TIME ON MY SHEET?)