Work is called “work” for a reason. It has never meant to be fun or enjoyable.
The history of work for most of humankind can exemplify this statement. Dating all the way back to the very first form of work, from hunter gatherer societies to the reign of Julius Caesar in ancient Rome, common people have worked to feed their families and put a roof over their head. That was basically the sole purpose of work.
The knowledge economy and ongoing technological revolution has made it very possible to be happy at work and get paid to do what you love. But, there is a difference between possible and real. My recent counseling work has focused on bridging this gap.
For example, I was working with a man in his mid thirties from Milford, CT. He had conditioned himself to thinking that “work is work” and it was normal to be unhappy during the week. He had suddenly realized how depressing it would be if for the rest of his career he was living in a constant cycle of “just gotta get through this week”.
He knew what he wanted to do but was not exactly sure just how to put his plan to action. Specifically, he had a business idea for the automobile industry that could definitely take flight . I don’t know much about cars or the manufacturing industry. But, I do know how to start small businesses. We worked together for a few months and he started seeing that this dream could actually become his reality.
He looked at me in one of our last meetings and said: “Wait…I can be happy at work”!