Job satisfaction

My work laptop

For well over 6 years now, I've been reading books and blogs on financial independence, because I wanted to escape my current office job and do something that actually makes me happy. It was my believe I needed a plan, enough financial backup and courage. These books and blogs help me get (and keep) motivated on reaching this goal. They offer tips and information on how to change your lifestyle and take the step, which always turns out easier than first believed. An office-less lifestyle comes in many forms and everybody has his/her own way of doing this. It all depends on the person and on what you are willing to give up (and receive) in life.

To be honest, I did enjoy my work as an IT Engineer working in an office when I first started. It was exciting, vibrant and I learned a lot of interesting new techniques. But now, after ~15 years of sitting behind multiple computer screens, things get boring. I'm also losing interest in my field of expertise which makes work even more difficult.

The biggest hurdle I'm facing now is that I don't yet know what else I want to do. I have many interests, but which one shall I turn into my new career/lifestyle? It's something I need to work out as soon as possible. But, I'm not worried, though. Things have a way of turning out great, eventually.

But, why am I losing interest in my work? I used to like it even although it was quite stressful at times. It's semi-comfortable and the money is great. Well ... things change. People change. I no longer enjoy being in a rat race trying to outperform my co-workers or at least keep up with rapid changes in the industry. Important diploma's and IT certificates have little value to me (In my work I've met a lot of IT people. Some of them had no certification at all, but were extremely good at their job and I've also had some co-workers who had several high standard certificates, but were not working at an acceptable level). Early mornings and long days in the office without much physical exercise leave me tired, every day. My current work is just not doing it for me anymore.

We all need some form of income to pay for the bills, but when work is no longer fulfilling it is time for change. Otherwise you're just selling out. Exchanging an interesting or exciting life for a secure life. Fulfillment in your work is very important, maybe more than you might think, and differs from person to person, but it all comes down to a sense of purpose. When you feel your work lacks purpose than there's no fulfillment and your motivation goes downhill. 

Now, my job as a Linux Engineer isn't all bullshit and without a purpose, but one could argue the societal usefulness. American anthropologist David Graeber had a great definition of what a bullshit job is and I actually know some people who have such jobs!

"David Graeber:

Bullshit job: a form of paid employment that is so completely pointless, unnecessary, or pernicious that even the employee cannot justify its existence even though, as part of the conditions of employment, the employee feels obliged to pretend that this is not the case."

This post may sound a bit gloomy and negative, but it really isn't. Coming to the realization that you don't like your current job/lifestyle/situation/... gives you motivation to change. Realizing you want or need to change is the first step. The next step is change, which is much bigger for some. Change can be scary or difficult or even out of reach, but if you really want it (or need it) then just do it. In your own way and at your own pace. Start by talking to other people about it. They might have some great ideas for you. And you're helping them as well, because changes in your life also mean that the people around you need to get used to it. The sooner you talk to them, the quicker they can adapt.

Anyway, I hope you liked this post. Leave your thoughts in a comment below.

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