What if your work made you happier? 

Sometime I feel like a tour guide from Hawaii meeting natives of Siberia (at least in days prior to media). I describe the great possibilities of warm water, endless sun, and easy living. The natives want to believe. But the elders look on skeptically. Life as they know it has always been cold, stormy, and tough. 

There are many days where my work elevates my mood. If my mood was on a scale of 1-10, I enter the work day at a 5, my work itself will bring me to an 8. Other than my clients or anyone else to whom I’m trying to bring hope, I’ve stopped telling people as I know this sometimes adds to discontent from those who dislike their work. I tell you because you are on this site and you likely want to believe. But you may have skeptics in your life who tell you “work is called work because it’s not fun.” 

I know that reality. Before moving to Connecticut to start an education-counseling entity, I was an attorney through the 1990s. If I entered the work day as an 8, I would be brought down to a 5 by the end of the day. Fortunately, my first work experience as an attorney was with the Philadelphia District Attorney’s Office. It was a great job – in fact the only “job” I ever really liked. So, in my dreariest of days as an attorney in Washington, DC, I had hope.

When meeting with some of my career counseling clients, I can tell that they too want to believe but they others in their life (parents/spouse/close friends) who have suggested that they stop searching for happiness at work because it just isn’t there. They might be well meaning but in this one area they are as ignorant as those provincial Siberians.