Emily Perron here with part two of a new series where I’m answering some of the most common questions I get as a career development strategist.
If you missed the first question, you can get it here.
The second question I’m often asked is along the lines of… I’m soooo bored at work! What do I do about it?
Let me tell you, I know a thing or two about being bored at work.
Basically, as soon as I have learned how to do something, I want either to move on to something else or start improving what I just learned.
For me, finding new challenges in a traditional job has been a challenge in itself. And I know how hard it can be to stick with a boring job because I’ve done it.
Emilie Wapnick, author of How to be Everything, says:
BOREDOM IS YOUR MIND'S WAY OF LETTING YOU KNOW THAT IT's TIME TO MOVE ON.
And I completely agree. But, unfortunately, changing jobs is rarely a fast process. Applying for jobs takes time and we usually don’t get the first ones we apply for. That is if you actually know what jobs to apply for in the first place.
If this sounds familiar, here are a few ways you can shake it up…
Change up your routine.
If possible, a simple change in the time you commute to and from work can make a big difference. Even if it’s just a couple days out of the week.
It might sound silly, but when you’re stuck in a rut, it can be really effective.
For example, maybe you start going to the gym before work, pick up a meditation class or sit in a coffee shop to read for an hour.
Be sure to check with your manager before you make these kind of changes, but I’ve found most can be flexible if your work is still getting done.
Take on an extra project.
Sometimes, the best way to make a change at work is to literally change your work in some way. There are a few ways to do this.
One is to ask for an additional assignment of some sort. You never know… your boss or another leader may be looking for some help but not know that you’re interested in some new experiences.
Another way is to trade work with a co-worker. That way, your work and their work is still covered and you both get something new to do.
Again, having your manager’s support is important. Typically, if you make a case for how the department or the company will benefit while you get some new experience, they just might say yes.
Keep in mind that you will never know if you don’t ask.
Make the most of your lunch break.
If creating change in your work environment isn’t an option, take ownership of your lunch break.
Listen to podcasts, read a good book, bring a small personal project to work on or even start experimenting with what you pack for lunch.
All of these things can give you something to look forward to in the middle of the day.
Counting down the hours until you get to leave just makes the day drag by. But creating a lunch time you’re excited for gives you something to work towards.
Remember, you are in control.
A boring job can feel impossible to get through every day. But the truth is, it’s all in how you approach it.
When you take control of your work day in whatever way you can, it makes the week a lot easier to get through.
What are some of the ways you’ve tried to make a boring job more bearable? I always love to hear from you so just hit reply and let me know!
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