Work is where we spend the majority of our time; in fact a third of our lifetime is spent working.

More of us are working longer as retirement age continues to increase here in the UK, so creating a happier and healthier life working in a job you love is just so damn important.

Studies have shown that nearly a fifth of UK adults are unhappy in their job and this breaks my heart.

The main reason?  Job unhappiness.  Us folk want to feel that what we’re doing is important, it’s meaningful and it has a purpose.  Those involved in the study didn’t feel the passion of the job, a sense of purpose or even that it was what they were about – it didn’t marry up to the person they are or what they believe in.

Can you relate?

Know this my friend.  You’re not alone.

Here are some of the many in my community right now, meet…

  • The “in right place at the right time” – so many of us fall into the work we do today by accident.  An opportunity presented itself at the right moment that you took.  Over time, it can then become a place where you feel stuck or trapped, because the reasons you took it back then, are not right for you now.  Money, security, a step on the ladder.

Or is this you?

  • The “it’s not the career for me” anymore – you studied for a certain type of profession fresh out of school for a career you thought would be the right one to get into.  And now, you’re in that place where it just doesn’t feel right, it’s not what you want to be doing anymore and you feel trapped.

Or maybe you’re…

  • The career changer, counting down days in the day job – you’ve figured out where you want to be and setting the wheels in motion for the next step, but for the time being you’ve got to hang it out in the ‘day job’ until you’re ready to pull away and take the leap and be where you really want to be.

Or perhaps you’re…

  • The career driven and determined – you’re hungry to progress your career; maybe with the company you work for already, but in order to progress you’ve got to be someone else’s idea and expectations to achieve your career aspirations.  You’re feeling the pressure to stay late, always go the extra mile and continually prove yourself to your boss and peers to demonstrate that you’re capable or the right person for the job.

Or is this you…

  • The work package is what’s keeping me here – you need the money.  You’re in a job that pays a good salary.  You get paid when you take leave or sick, and your annual leave quota works in your favour.  However the environment / colleagues / managers / work* (delete as applicable) just isn’t working for you and you feel like you’re selling your soul just that little bit more each day you have to go into THAT place.

So, which one are you?

If you can relate to any of these situations or bits of each one, then it can be an exhausting and distressing place to be in.

Living a work life like this will gradually build up like tartar on teeth and things will start to take its toll on you – emotionally, mentally and physically if you’re not being true to yourself.

They can impact every area of your life – your relationships, your personal growth, your health, your social time, your finances and even the work that you’re doing.

After a while, you start to question what you’re doing and in some instances become unrecognisable to your loved ones and even yourself.  The person staring back at you in the mirror doesn’t look like you anymore.  You start to question how you got here and where did it all change.

Truth is we all need to be someone different in our work environments to some degree.  We need to bring an element of professionalism into our work life, which carries through into our persona and the job we carry out.  You will be different in work to the person you are outside of the job. But, and this is a big BUT, you don’t have to compromise WHO YOU ARE to do this.

Because as soon as you start changing and making those tweaks here and there, to be what someone else wants or expects, you become mis-aligned with your direction, your path in life.  Creating that out of balance feeling internally for you, which can result in depression, stress, anxiety and many other tough and challenging emotions.

If you’re struggling to remain authentic in your work life today, then carry out this ‘mini review’…

  • If you’re already employed, what are the values of your employer, the company you work for?  These should be visible and promoted across your company workplace.  Do they align with your values in life?  If not, then maybe it’s time to make a change.
  • Write out why you go and do the job you do.  What are your reasons, get clear on your ‘why’.  How is your ‘why’ being met in your current work situation today and does it align?
  • Trust your instincts – if something feels off then don’t put yourself in a situation that you don’t agree with or wish to progress with.  Speak up and explain why you don’t think it’s right.  Nobody has the right to make you do something or put you in a situation that you don’t agree with.
  • Think about what’s compromising you from being your beautiful authentic self in your current work situation. What do you need to do to bring ‘you’ back into your life?
  • Be honest with yourself – where do you want to be 12 months from now? Think on what you would like to be doing and are you working towards achieving that?

Don’t compromise being your authentic self at work or any area of your life.

You’re here for a reason, you’ve got gifts to share and talents to use.

You are made for more my friend.