For some people the allure of 9-5 life is strong – there’s generally a set routine, a comfortable office space (well, not at the moment, but you know…), some nice perks and a group of like-minded people. But what if it’s not for you? How can you tell? These are the 6 signs you’re not long for corporate life.
You feel claustrophobic
Sitting at a desk all day isn’t part and parcel of the job for you, it’s fully painful. You feel confined to your desk like a wild animal trapped in a cage and you take every possible opportunity to get outside.
You take issue with authority
Every brief, instruction or tidbit of feedback grates on your nerves. It’s all you can do to avoid groaning loudly and rolling your eyes. You’re taken back to your teenage years of angst and rebellion and long for the satisfaction of slamming a door. Instead, you internalise your rage and craft 6 different aggressive emails without ever sending any. That’ll learn them.
Process breaks your soul
You find the bureaucracy of a business excruciating and you’re baffled at how your colleagues endure it. You’re genuinely afraid of how you’ll react if faced with another pointless Excel sheet, meeting or zoom meeting about a pointless Excel sheet. You try to be positive except that you don’t at all because nobody could be positive about such wretched conditions. You wonder if Bob Geldof will do a whip around to raise awareness of your plight.
Your day feels listless
There’s no part of your working day that you really enjoy. The job itself is well within your skill set and the workload is manageable but you frequently catch yourself asking ‘what’s the actual point?’ You have vivid and repeated fantasies of knocking over the water cooler and sailing to freedom.
You don’t feel like you
You’re weary from the exertion of your unsuitable job and it’s started taking a toll on your charm and social status. You don’t have the same desire for post work gatherings and Sunday evenings send you into a glass case of emotion and despair.
Your health is suffering
You’ve noticed significant changes to your weight, mood and appetite and your presenteeism has taken a hit.
So what should you do? First, consider ways you can redefine your role, be it working less regimented hours or working remotely a couple of days a week. Have an open conversation with your manager and explain where you’re at. Even small leniencies can make a big difference to your job satisfaction. Think about how you can get more creative freedom and autonomy over your work and see if you can come up with some alternatives for that stifling red tape.
Failing that, it’s time to cut your losses and leave your current role. Life’s just too short to be stuck in a job where you’re unhappy.