“To find joy in work is to discover the fountain of youth.” – Pearl S. Buck
We have all looked at the clock, as your boredom increases and you find out you still have hours left before the mundane task ends. When we do fun tasks, a task that we really enjoy and can be fully present in, time tends to run much faster without us even noticing. The second option sounds much better, so how do we achieve the second option?
Many sources encourage people to find work they are passionate about. While that is not necessarily a bad idea, what if the idea just doesn’t resonate with you? What if you just don’t feel comfortable leaving your current job to start anew and follow your passion with an unknown income? Should you just stay at your current job and stay miserable?
If you want to follow your passion and quit your current job, that’s an option. On the other hand, we can also try to make our current jobs more entertaining. If we choose this option, we can find more joy in the work we do, without making a career change with possible financial consequences. So how do we do this?
Change your perception
While your job will still involve the same tasks, how can you change your perception of the job? For example, an employee at Starbucks has the responsibility of making orders all day. Instead of having this thought occupy the perception of the job, we can think of it as an opportunity to help others by making their drinks and providing positive interactions to brighten their day. In the latter option, the job provides a brighter sense of meaning and sounds more enjoyable.
Make it playful
Often times, we are so caught up in everyday life that we forget to be playful. Instead of being so serious while making orders, what if we could add a fun mission to the job? For example, see how many people you can make smile in a work shift? How many times can you have positive interactions with your coworkers, or engage in a positive conversation with the customer? By making fun missions like this, we can improve our relationships, while improving the quality of our work life, relationships with others, and our happiness.
Focus on the positive
If there are elements of your job that you enjoy, pay attention to those elements. Let that be your focus, and guide your emotions. When we notice the positive, it tends to grow and we see more than we did before. As we see the positive, it is easier to have a more playful and positive perception of the job.
Jobs were mentioned as examples, but this idea can apply to school or with mundane repetitive tasks. Making it fun helps improve your happiness and makes the time go with you rather than against you. So give it a shot and see what happens. After all, if the day is already dragging what do you have to lose?2