Do you mean I could be happy at work?

Work is called work because its not supposed to enjoyable.

The history of work for most of humankind would support this opinion.  I recently listened to an audiobook from The Great Courses on the history of typical people in ancient times.  The course focused on life in Rome, not for Julius Caesar, but rather for people in normal society.  Work life was tough.  This has mostly been true throughout history and throughout the world today.


The knowledge economy has brought the possibility of happiness at work for most everyone.  There is a difference between possible and real.  My work in career counseling has lately focused on how to bridge the two.


Here’s an example: I was working with a thirtysomething woman from New Haven. She had resigned herself to thinking that “work is work” so it was normal to be unhappy M-F for most of the day.  Finally, she had enough when she started thinking about the future – do I have to feel this way the rest of my work days?  


She knew what she wanted to do but she didn’t know how to do it.  Specifically, she had an idea for a niche business in the fashion industry.  I don’t know much about fashion. But, I do know how to start small businesses.  We worked together for several months and she started seeing how her dream could become a reality.


She looked at me during one of our last meetings and said: “Do you mean I could be happy at work?”