Published August 21, 2013
No one is happy all the time at work. After all, it’s called work for a reason.
According to a recent Britain-based study, more than half of Britons experience regular “desk rage.” What’s more, a recent Gallup poll shows more than 70% of American employees are either “not engaged” or “actively disengaged” from their jobs, so it’s not a far leap to assume we have some workplace indignation as well.
If you find yourself regularly frustrated or impatient at work, you could be suffering from office anger. On the surface, it might seem like normal day-to-day nonsense that can be brushed off, and that your colleagues don’t even notice your displeasure. But you’re wrong. Chances are they do notice, and if you don’t address and work to fix the situation, you could soon find yourself unemployed.
Here are seven possible reasons for your office anger and easy ways to address them to stay employed:
Reason #1: You’re over-worked and underpaid. It’s no secret that the economy is improving tentatively, forcing many companies to ask more from their employees without increasing wages. The demands often leave employees feeling powerless, unappreciated and unmotivated.
The solution: It’s time to stop feeling like a victim and start taking charge of your own work life. This does not mean you have to quit your job or become self-employed, however, it’s vital in today’s job market that employees take ownership of their careers and act as if they’re running their own business. The truth is, your career is your business.
Reason #2: You’re in the wrong job. You may have taken your current job to pay the bills or entered the industry right out of college and your interests have since change. Either way, not being interested or stimulated by your work can lead to frustration and anger.
The solution: Ask yourself what you’re really good at and what you feel that you’re meant to do and will make you happy. Considering these things and then assessing your skills set (both hard skills and soft skills) will allow you to decide if it’s time to make a change. When you’re in a job that just feels like it fits, you will see how much easier it is to realize true success.
Reason #3: You’re in a dead-end job. If it’s been years since you’ve had a raise or promotion, chances are you are at a dead end with the employer. When employees are not regularly challenged at work, complacency and boredom set in and this eventually leads to anger.
The solution: Start by having a conversation with your boss to explore other opportunities within the organizations. Ask for more responsibilities and challenges, and convey that you want to grow with the company. If this is not possible or if the conversation doesn’t go well, it might be time to start networking to find a new opportunity.
Reason #4: Your boss, colleagues or customers are annoying you. It’s not easy working with people you don’t like for eight hours a day, five days a week.
The solution: Avoid becoming involved or fueling workplace drama—it will get you nowhere fast. You can’t wait around for others to make peace, but you can make small inroads to improve your relationships. Remember, you’re there to do a job and to provide a service.
Reason #5: You’re not feeling well. Often when people work crazy hours, they neglect their physical health and don’t even realize they don’t feel well.
The solution: Find a quiet place where you can sit still for a few minutes per day and relax and get away from it all and re-focus. If anything doesn’t feel well, address the issue or contact your doctor immediately.
Reason #6: You have troubles in your personal life. If you’re arguing with your significant other, troubled by something going on with your kids or angry at a friend, it’s possible that you’re taking that baggage with you to work.
The solution: You’re only human and sometimes it’s hard to leave the laundry at home; however, you’re not being paid to deal with your personal troubles in the office. By doing so, you could be jeopardizing your career, so do the best you can to separate the two before you have professional troubles as well.
Reason #7: It’s been more than a year since you’ve taken a vacation. Need I say more?
The solution: You don’t have to travel overseas or even stay in a hotel to have a vacation. Haven’t you heard that staycations are in vogue? The problem with the idea of staycations is that people forget to use the time to vacate their lives, and instead spend the time working through their home to-do lists. If you’re going to stay home on your week off, make sure you actively plan activities away from your day-to-day routine that will re-energize and refresh you.
Wall Street veteran Lindsay Broder (on twitter: @occupreneur) is a certified professional coach known as The Occupreneur™ Coach. Based in New York, she specializes in Occupreneur™career coaching, strategy & consulting services for highly successful professionals & organizations who strive to improve one or more aspects of their businesses or careers.