Are you unhappy in your job or with your working conditions? Maybe it’s the pay or the hours. The commute all the time. The extra work you’re doing for someone else and not getting recognition for it.
It could be a lot of things, but you wouldn’t be alone – many people are unhappy with their working conditions. Often times their first reaction is to simply quit and find somewhere else, but that isn’t always a real option for most people.
Instead, consider talking to your boss about your conditions, and offer solutions on how you can meet in the middle to find a happy balance. Your company doesn’t want to have to interview, hire, and train a new person for your position. If you don’t want to leave, try getting things fixed, first.
Make a List to Figure it Out
What makes you mad? What is frustrating?
Take a week and write down every little thing that makes your eyelids twitch or your teeth clench. Maybe it’s the way a coworker interacts with you, the hours you’re working, or the lack of you-time you’re getting in the mornings before your first cup of coffee kicks in.
Having a list to refer back to is important, and maybe it will help you identify some underlying issues. Perhaps it isn’t a problem with one person or one situation, but a team, the way communication is handled, or the hours you have to put into specific job duties.
Lists will help you see all of that.
Set up a Meeting
You can’t express these things to your boss over email or text messages. You simply can’t. It might be tempting, but a lot can get misread and lost in translation, so these things are best done in person.
Don’t bring that list you just made, either. Chances are you wrote down every item in frustration or anger, and it’s going to come off as an attack. While you’re waiting for your meeting, spend the few days leading up to it and create a mini-list of conversational topics.
Frame your issues as positive, or at least offering positive solutions, and try not to harp too much on each one. Using terms like positive work-life balance, emotional health, and impacting performance are all good in these kinds of meetings.
Bring a Solution
You don’t have to have all the answers. But some answers will help!
Offer up solutions to your problems. Do you find yourself having to work through lunch? Figure out why and offer up how to fix it. Do you struggle with early morning tasks? Ask to schedule meetings or deadlines an hour back so you have time to settle in and set the mood for the day.
It’s totally fine to brainstorm together with your boss for some of these issues, especially if you’re unsure of how to fix them – but at least offering suggestions for some of your problems will go a long way. It will also show you aren’t a quitter or just a whiner, but you really want to do your job better and increase your productivity.