How can you tell that you’re unhappy at work? That something may not be right and that it’s time to either make some changes at work, or move on to a new job? As part of my work, I talk to a lot of people who are not happy with their jobs. Here are the top symptoms of unhappiness at work that I continue to observe. How many apply to you?
1: You start to procrastinate
You really, honestly try to get some work done. But somehow you never really get around to it. Or you only do it at the last possible moment and then only do a half-baked effort.
Many people view procrastination as a personal weakness. To me, it’s one of the strongest warning signs of unhappiness at work.
2: You can’t stand the Monday morning
Some people don’t sleep on Sunday night very well because I’m worried about going to work on Monday morning. One of the worst things about being unhappy at work is that the unhappiness eats into your free/personal time. If you have a lousy day or week at work, it’s difficult to go home and still have a fun, relaxed, carefree weekend.
3: You are ambitious about salary and title
Sometimes you don’t like the job itself, so you focus much more on salary or perks. Those unhappy at work get a lot more competitive, for a simple reason: When work does not give happiness and enjoyment, people want to get something else out of it to make it even. That’s when they focus on compensation and promotions.
4: You don’t feel like helping co-workers or care about anything
When we are in a bad mood, we are much less likely to help others. This is the common psychological response. So you casually pass by a coworker who is trying to balance a heavy box.
You just care about your own paycheck while things may go wrong for your workplace.
5: You make no friends at workplace
Friends at work? When people can’t connect with coworkers for whatever reasons, work becomes mechanic and people become unhappy. Mind longs for workplace engagement.
6: Small things annoy you
Small annoyances bug you out of all proportion. Like someone taking up too much talking loudly, air conditioning too high or low, someone taking long at coffee machine.
When you’re unhappy you have much thinner skin and a shorter fuse. It takes a lot less to annoy you.
7: You’re suspicious of other people’s motives
No matter what people do, your first thought always is “what are they up to?” Whether it is good, bad or routine, all decisions and actions made by your managers or co-workers are seen as negative. You are suspicious of others when unhappy.
8: Physical symptoms
You suffer from insomnia, headaches, low energy, muscle tension and/or other physical symptoms. When you’re unhappy at work you’re more prone to experience these physical stress symptoms. This may lead to high cortisol hormone level and weaker immune system.
How do you measure up?
How many of these symptoms apply to you in your current job?