According to a study by the Conference Board, a New York nonprofit, less than half of Americans are satisfied with their jobs. More than half of Americans are unhappy at work, and the consequences of feeling miserable with the state of your employment can be devastating. Though happiness and satisfaction can often be achieved through the right career training program, many Americans feel “stuck” with their current jobs.
The side effects of being miserable in the workplace can hit you physically, mentally, and emotionally. These side effects can wear you down, put strain on valued relationships, and make you dread going to work every day. What’s even worse; the consequences of being unhappy at work can cause you to lose hope.
So, why don’t people just change jobs? Usually, it’s because they feel trapped. Even if you’re only 30 years old, you might feel like it’s too late to change careers and “make something of yourself.” Your worth as a human being isn’t tied to your job, but it’s much easier to lead a happy life when your job is satisfying.
So, is it too late for you to find that satisfying job?
Finding Success After 30, or even After 40
Before we get back to those nasty side effects of being unhappy at work, let’s look at a success story.
Midlife success stories don’t get much more inspirational than Georgia native, Sharon Jones. Jones is now 59 years old, and she didn’t release her first real album until she was 46 years old.
She and her band, the Dap-Kings, are loved by fans and acclaimed by critics. They’re at the forefront of the soul revival movement, and Jones has recorded tracks with artists like Lou Reed, David Byrne, and Michael Buble.
Jones always had musical aspirations, and she was always working on her craft. But until the late 90s, she worked as a corrections officer and an armored car guard for Wells Fargo bank. She probably didn’t find much satisfaction in those jobs and, if she hadn’t believed in herself and switched careers, she would probably still be unhappy.
Sharon Jones, one of the best living soul singers in the world, would have always wondered about what “could have been.” Even in her late 30s and early 40s, Sharon Jones pursued a career change and changed her life.
It’s never too late to make a good decision.
The Consequences of Unhappiness
So, what’s in store for you if you don’t follow Sharon Jones’ example? You’ll be unsatisfied with your job, and going to work will bring on feelings of existential dread.
But workplace unhappiness goes deeper than some bad feelings.
Here are some side effects of being unhappy at work:
- Weight gain – According to a study from the National Center for Biotechnology Information, unhappy workers are likely to gain weight. Weight gain brings about all sorts of physical problems and illnesses. An unhappy work life also robs you of the motivation you need to eat healthy and exercise. According to the study, “The eating behavior can be affected by psychological job stress responses such as tension/anxiety and depression. Workers feeling stressed may be more likely to develop their eating behavior to eat much and gain weight.”
- Getting sick – If you’re stressed, unhappy, and feeling unappreciated at work, you might find yourself getting sick more often. An article in the Journal of Occupational and Organizational Psychology reported that people who hate their jobs are more prone to getting sick, and also more prone to depression. The BBC confirms this as well.
- Isolation and damaged relationships – When you’re negative and miserable all the time, others find it difficult to be around you. There are people in your life who love you unconditionally, but even they might struggle to spend time with you if you’re always upset because of your job. Strained relationships are a common side effect of hating your job.
- Lack of sleep – The stress, anxiety, and tension that come from hating your job can seriously impede your ability to get a good night’s sleep. From The Huffington Post, “People who are miserable at work often find it harder to fall asleep or they don’t sleep as well. You’ve probably been there: [lying] awake, staring at the ceiling, listening to the ticking clock on the nightstand as visions of your to-do list or frustrating co-worker dance through your head. This is bad for your health, because sleep restores the body and strengthens the immune system.”
As the stress, anxiety, tension, dread, missed sleep, damaged relationships, and illness add up, your physical and mental health take a huge hit. Even if your job isn’t killing you, it’s hurting you.
It might be time to change careers.
The Side Effects of Happiness
Unsurprisingly, people who are happy at work experience less stress and get sick less often. They sleep more and they have better relationships at home.
An article in US News quotes Sonja Lyubomirsky, a psychology professor at the University of California–Riverside:
“Positive emotions can serve as antidotes to negative emotions. So learning how to increase the levels of positive emotion in your life can actually make you feel less stressed, more resilient, less angry, less anxious.”
Sharon Jones proves it’s not too late for a career change, and tons of studies prove an unhappy work life is affecting the rest of your life.
If you want to switch careers, no matter how old you are, it might be time for a good career training program, like the Pediatric Dental Assistant School. The sooner you’re satisfied with your job, the sooner you’ll be more satisfied with yourself and the world around you.
And think how satisfied and happy you’ll be knowing that you make a positive difference in children’s lives each and every day! Becoming a pediatric dental assistant with the Pediatric Dental Assistant School is your first step in finding a rewarding, fun-filled career.
We spend so much of our lives working, it doesn’t make since to be miserable during office hours.