Because you can learn from just about any experience.
It’s the summer – and that means internships are buzzing, and jobs are upon us. However, in this effort to build our resume and make a couple bucks, we can begin to feel discouraged when we find that the job we were excited about is not what we thought it would be. Maybe it’s expecting more than we think we can offer, maybe we feel more drained than we would’ve liked.
But the answer is not in quitting, the answer is in shifting your mindset. Unless you are being treated unfairly by your boss, this experience can be a great way to grow and get stronger in areas where you are weak.
You can learn from any kind of experience.
We are not called to be comfortable all of the time. Jobs that take us out of our comfort zone and what we are used to can grow us, mold us, and shape us into the boss woman we were meant to be. And there are certainly some ways to keep going and make this a positive, worthwhile experience.
So without further ado, keep in mind these four tips when you’re getting ready for your next work day.
1. Think of the positives
You probably are rolling your eyes at this, thinking how on earth could you possibly think of the positives when all you want to do is complain. But even though complaining feels good in the moment, it really adds NOTHING to the solution. I do think there is a time and place to get your feelings out on the table, but wallowing in self-pity is not going to make your situation better.
Make a list of all of the things you like about your job. It can be minor, like if you’re working at a coffee shop, you can say that free coffee is a pro (free coffee is always a blessing from above). That is something you would not have without the job, so it is worth celebrating. Or if you are a lifeguard, you can say that getting a tan is a pro. You are basically paid to get a tan, which is a win in my book. Take a second to clutter out the negativity and focus on what you do like about your job, even if it’s as simple as a paid tan or a free coffee.
2. Make a list of what you can learn from this experience
Now that you’ve focused on the positives, think of what you can take away from this job. Maybe this job taught you how to talk to strangers, or how to deal with difficult people who are hangry for their meal. You might’ve gotten a recommendation letter, or a couple of articles for a future employer. We can take away a learning lesson from every experience, so focus on what you are getting out of this instead of what it’s getting out of you.
3. Look at this as a stepping stone to see how you were made
If you are drained from something, you probably were not made to do it.
I figured this out from the book Designing Your Life, which is all about how to find what you born to do. In this book there was an exercise where we recorded different things we did during the day, and how energized we felt afterwards. So for example, reading and writing gave me super high energy levels, but studying Geology drained the crud out of me. And that slowly led me to figure out what I ultimately will want to do with my life, which is not rock related.
So clearly this job is draining you. Pinpoint why, the specific things you walk away feeling drained doing. You were made for a unique purpose, and it’s in the things you love. Heck, I do not love science, but my friend might love it. She was made for it, I wasn’t. Sometimes finding what you don’t love can lead you to your life purpose. This process of elimination can lead us to what our soul is truly yearning for.
4. Make relationships
One of the best things we can take away from a job are life-giving relationships. Laughing throughout the day, building friendships and encouraging those around you can make your day so much more worthwhile. It also helps shift the inward thinking to an outward mindset, bettering the lives of others instead of dwelling about our own. Focus on loving and making a difference in the lives around you, and your days will get a lot more brighter.
You can get through this.
Though it might be hard to wake up every morning, throw your outfit on, put a smile on your face, and walk out the door to another day – a lot can change with your mindset. Are you going to keep a positive outlook, or are you going to sulk throughout your day? You are in charge of your mentality. You are in charge of your happiness.