How To Hate Your Job

Hear the alarm go off and cringe. No one likes to hear their alarm, but yours has become like a glass of ice water splashed on your face during a particularly pleasant dream. “Get up,” it says, “time to do this again.”

You have that daily debate with yourself, running through the pros and cons of calling out sick, figuring out how believable an excuse would be again — how many have you made so far this year? This summer? This month? “My sister is sick.” “I have the flu.” “My car broke down.” You’ve clearly made too many to be believed again, but a tiny part of you wants them to know it’s fake, that you’re trying to get out of work, and fire you. You aren’t even hungover, just profoundly tired of seeing these same people, doing these same things. It feels like a hangover, strangely, only without the wonderful, debaucherous night preceding it. You want to be fired, but can’t work up the balls to quit. You know, on every level, you can’t.

You need this job.

How many days could you live without a new paycheck? How much do you have in your savings account? Do you even have a savings account? Why don’t you ever save money — why do you leave yourself like this, dependent on the errant change you’ll find in the couch cushions so you can have subway fare? How much change can you possibly have in one couch?

Brushing your teeth, you debate even doing your hair, putting on new clothes, doing anything that would give the false impression that you have any interest in being there. But, day after day, you do. There is a proud, almost endearing part of the human mind that insists we look presentable, even when marching to our deaths. Can’t let them know they’ve won. Gotta look good. You make yourself look nice, you shine your shoes, you smile at everyone. If you have to go, go out with a bang, not with a hundred whispered questions of “What happened to them?”

Your coworkers are grating — and perhaps what’s most grating of all is that they seem to take some kind of satisfaction out of this job, as though they could possibly enjoy the claustrophobic tedium of this bullsh-t routine. They ramble on about something they did this week, some change they heard was happening at headquarters, something they saw on cable TV the night before that you have yet to illegally download. They are an adult, you are not. And the gossip, God, the gossip. This coworker — the one you don’t care about — she slept with that one guy you might have met that time but don’t remember. And that coworker — the one you also don’t care about, though in a more profound, almost existential way — he is breaking up with his girlfriend. Nod, nod, nod. Ooh, how interesting.

Maybe this would all be easier if you had even a shred of respect for your boss, but you don’t. How could you? Aside from dedicating their very life to the kind of job that makes you want to kill yourself before you even hit 30, the only satisfaction they seem to derive out of their existence is degrading and condescending to you whenever the occasion presents itself, reminding you that no matter how narrow and claustrophobic this food chain is, they are firmly above you. You don’t want to be there, but you need to, and there must be some small part of your boss that knows it, that exploits it. Call them your “manager” whenever you get the opportunity, “boss” implies a much firmer station of respect, and the utter mediocrity of their position in the grand scheme of things really chaps their ass to think about. It’s the little things, really.

Go home at the end of the day and relish in the small freedoms that your increasingly brief weeknights permit you. An overfull glass of wine, a trashy reality show, greasy thai food. Look at your surroundings, make a mental list of all the things you could do without, of all the pay cuts you could possibly survive if it meant getting out of your crushing daily routine. Think about going somewhere new, somewhere far, somewhere you could live on a few dollars a day and work hard, work well. Think of that fulfilling kind of exhaustion at the end of the day, a day in which you accomplished something. Somewhere, not here, but somewhere, you could feel that way every day. You could sleep heavy and quiet, and rise with the sun, with a smile. TC mark

image – Digitalhen

Chelsea Fagan

Chelsea Fagan founded the blog The Financial Diet. She is on Twitter.

Trace the scars life has left you. It will remind you that at one point, you fought for something. You believed.

“You are the only person who gets to decide if you are happy or not—do not put your happiness into the hands of other people. Do not make it contingent on their acceptance of you or their feelings for you. At the end of the day, it doesn’t matter if someone dislikes you or if someone doesn’t want to be with you. All that matters is that you are happy with the person you are becoming. All that matters is that you like yourself, that you are proud of what you are putting out into the world. You are in charge of your joy, of your worth. You get to be your own validation. Please don’t ever forget that.” — Bianca Sparacino

Excerpted from The Strength In Our Scars by Bianca Sparacino.

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  • http://www.justrealhappy.wordpress.com justrealhappy

    This is exactly how I feel. Exactly.

  • http://www.itmakesmestronger.com/2012/06/how-to-hate-your-job/ Only L<3Ve @ ItMakesMeStronger.com

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  • yuppp

    Omg this is my last job TO A T. Thank goodness I was fortunate enough to be able to leave.

  • http://ladaysandnights.wordpress.com ladaysandnights

    EXACTLY why i had to get out of there. No savings be damned.

  • http://cierrautumn.tumblr.com Cierra

    I had this revelation earlier in the year. I’m still at my mind numbing job, but I’m looking for something new that will challenge me and make me happy. It’s my goal to be somewhere new by the end of the year. It’s nice to know that other people feel the same way.

  • Victor

    It’s like some people actually get a kick out of spreadsheets, pressed shirts, and staff meetings. Blows my mind everyday.

  • http://twitter.com/AdolphRootbeer Adolph Rootbeer (@AdolphRootbeer)

    “dedicating their very life to the kind of job that makes you want to kill yourself before you even hit 30,”

    shit stays the same at 30, gets even worse, actually, because you no longer feel like you are just working through a younger stage of your life, but the miserable fear sets in, “is this all there is?” you are working for NOTHING except evenings and weekends, which are spent wasting every penny you could have saved on getting fucked up to temporariyl forget how shit your life has become, and shit it will remain, forever, amen!

  • lyn

    This hit home. Thank you for writing it, glad to see what i felt being put into words. It’a almost like a slow painful suicide, trying to stay in this job.

    “Think about going somewhere new, somewhere far, somewhere you could live on a few dollars a day and work hard, work well. Think of that fulfilling kind of exhaustion at the end of the day, a day in which you accomplished something. Somewhere, not here, but somewhere, you could feel that way every day. You could sleep heavy and quiet, and rise with the sun, with a smile.”

    This gives me hope, soon. One day.

  • http://crescentmelissa.wordpress.com CrescentMelissa

    Love this. Perfectly executed!

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