Your wife and kids don't get paid to diagnose your work problems. If they did, then they would probably be your boss! But, leaving work at work is much easier said than done. After all, for those parents who work outside the home, your work family may as well be like a second family, with all of those family quirks included.
First you've got the CEO's of the world, I mean grandma or grandpa. They're sitting in the corner trying to tell you how things were done in 'their day,' and how much easier life would be if you just did it the same way it's always been done.
Then there's the corporate worker in denial… I mean your crazy cousin Cal. He's always talking about how he's going to run away from home, open a tattoo shop, and stick it to his parents. Yet here he is, living in his parent's basement at the age of 28, still collecting an allowance.
And let's not forget about your co-workers, or your siblings. You're forced to share bunk beds (a cube farm) and Timmy wants the top bunk. This wouldn't be so bad, but when you're trying to finish up some last minute reading for school tomorrow, all you can hear is Timmy talking to his annoying girlfriend on the phone.
So as you can see, your work family is just that, a family… and usually a somewhat dysfunctional one. Why should you subject your real family to all the drama? Isn't one set of problems enough for them to deal with?
However, if you keep all of your work family's problems bottled up inside, they're bound to spill out at the most inopportune time. I believe if you apply the following list to your job, it will allow you to not only leave work at work (if you choose to), but talk about work in a more positive light.
- Share stories (Good and Bad - a little complaining can be good for bonding).
- Watch your emotions
- When you are struggling, ask yourself, “How can I enjoy this situation?”
- Creativity is vital at every job (Otherwise boredom sets in).
- Trust your gut (Most of the time it will be right).
- Be weird (We are all a little weird, embrace it and let it out).
- It’s your responsibility to be happy at work.
I would like to thank Karl at WorkHappyNow.com for the list above (here in its entirety). He's out there spreading the word that you should be happy at work, and if you're not you should make that happen.