what to do (even now) if you’re stuck in a job you hate

I’ve always received a lot of letters from people who hate their jobs and want to leave, but since the pandemic started, a sizable portion of those people feel they have no way out. The job market makes them pessimistic about their chances of landing a new position, and with so many layoffs, they worry that even if they do get a job offer, the new role might not be as secure as the one they’d be leaving behind.

At Slate today, I wrote about how so many people feel trapped in miserable situations right now–  and what to do if you feel stuck in a job you hate. You can read it here.

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{ 64 comments… read them below }

  1. Chilipepper*

    This describes me so hard!
    I would really appreciate hearing from others how they focus on the good stuff.
    Mine are
    pay (for the amount of work I do)
    Fairly hands off supervisors
    Fair level of autonomy over the main task

    But I’m underutilized and dont have a lot to do and I feel unfulfilled.

    I have not spent enough time thinking about what it would take to make me happy there so thats my next step.

    1. SomebodyElse*

      What I usually do in these situations is start looking for other projects to work on. I’ve found I’m most happy when I have a filling projects that I can be farmed out to. I’ve found that I generally get more autonomy, get to do some interesting things, build new skills, and has led to career advancement.

      I once had a job where I described myself as an encyclopedia… I would be pulled off the shelf, dust blown off, and referenced for information then replaced on the shelf. I was soooo bored! This is when I found that I could find my own excitement and still have the stability and anchor in my team. So far it’s worked for me :)

      Otherwise, I suggest finding a work hobby. I’ve learned and become a fairly advanced sharepoint designer in my free work time. I could really spend most of my time doing this because I had so little to do. It was both fun and has been useful so that I can create my own sites and functions as needed. So look around for things like that to keep you busy and interested.

      I’m not sure if any of this helps, but I guess it’s how I focus on the good stuff… if I can’t find any I create some!

      1. WorkNowPaintLater*

        My new job…which I am appreciative for…is very not busy some times. Which has slowly been driving me nuts.

        Thanks for the idea of the work hobby – my current work gives me access to both Photoshop and Access. Time to learn some new skills. :-)

      2. The New Wanderer*

        Absolutely. I was the “encyclopedia” in my previous position (great way to explain it!) and my career and interest in the role kind of stalled out. I think part of it was I got so bogged down in being underutilized that I had no motivation for improving my position.

        Contrast to now, I’m doing basically the same kind of work but I have a different management structure and for whatever reason, I feel like I have far more autonomy to initiate new projects that are both interesting to me and valuable to the company. Okay, the reason isn’t that obscure – all three of my managers for this current position have been openly interested in me, my career, and my work where my previous position’s rotating slate of managers could maybe pick me out of a lineup. So that makes a big difference. Now I’m getting lots of positive feedback from all corners and it’s such a change from before. I always had this much to offer, I just didn’t do anything with it before because I felt like it wouldn’t matter.

        Lessons learned: Don’t let feeling underutilized drag you down; fight it by making yourself more useful and valuable where you can.

      3. hmm*

        I completely agree.

        I’ve been in my role since mid-2019, and after my first few weeks in this role, I knew very quickly that I was being underutilized. When I was interviewing for the job, I was under the impression that I would play a big role in implementing many of the team’s projects, but in reality, I was stuck doing basic administrative work. My manager would only assign me one task per day, which would only take about 30 minutes to complete (e.g. data entry, making copies, etc.). My resume prior to this job was a bit spotty, so I told myself that I would stick it out and stay in this position for one year until my team finished our big project in mid-2020 (the results from this project would buff up my resume) before looking for another job. My manager is very much a micro-manager, and does not approve of me doing anything outside of what he had assigned me even if I had already completed my tasks. Even so, I managed to take a couple of classes (paid for by the company) to learn how to use new software.

        COVID completely threw my job searching plans off track. My industry has been hard hit by the pandemic and isn’t likely to bounce back anytime soon. When my company switched me from FT to PT status, I started taking a bootcamp class and took on an internship in my new field to try and pivot my career. I am still working at my old job, which I am becoming less and less interested in everyday, but I’m using my free time to learn more about my new industry and am in the process of interviewing for some entry level roles. Honestly, this past year has really tested my patience and time management. I wish I could end my current role so badly, but at this time, I can only patiently wait and hope that the light at the end of the tunnel is coming soon.

    2. Mel_05*

      When I would feel myself getting irate, I would remind myself why I took the job (work I enjoyed – mostly, plenty of vacation time) and why I hadn’t taken a new one yet (offers weren’t competitive, bad glass door reviews for management).

      That didn’t totally fix it for me, so I also tried to make sure I was improving my skills at the job and not just coasting. Improving my skills really helped me feel good about the work I was doing, even if I was doing it in a frustrating environment.

    3. Aggretsuko*

      I remind myself every day that I’m doing this for the health insurance, for the lots of vacation time if I need it (even if I don’t use it, the state has to pay me for it if I’m canned!), for the benefits that I get from working at a giant organization. I get free classes and other freebies. The location is great for me. In the beforetimes I could walk to work and I never paid for parking. It’s stable employment. I like almost all of my coworkers and almost all of them like me.

      Also in a pandemic, they immediately moved everyone home (and I was in a job where that was an absolute no-no before) when they had to, they don’t plan on forcing anyone to go back into the office and may very well let us work from home from now on. I’m so grateful I’m not working in an industry I love because if I was working in the arts, I’d be unemployed and doomed now. Heck, we even hired people this year and we’re not going to have layoffs or furloughs after all.

      I do hate a lot of daily aspects of my job, which is unfortunate, but I’m doing this for the metabenefits and the larger picture. If I had a job where I did what I wanted on a daily basis, I’d be expendable and unsupported financially. (And indeed, that is what happened in my former life when I did work in a career I loved and used my skills.)

  2. CR*

    I am living proof that you can get an offer from a better job during a pandemic and leave the job you hate! I felt so stuck and lost like these letter writers, but it was not completely hopeless. I put all my energy into finding a new job instead of wasting emotional energy on the job I hated.

    1. AndersonDarling*

      Absolutely! I’m about to make my second job change during the pandemic. There are companies that are growing during the pandemic and are actively hiring. If someone is feeling depressed with their job, take a look a the job boards and do a casual job search. You don’t need to invest 20 hours a week to apply to everything, but take one evening a week to apply to the 2 best jobs you can find.

    2. Sarah*

      Exactly. I get that things are different right now, but the common advice from people to “just be grateful you have a job” and to not rock the boat “because it’s impossible to find something else right now” us just unhelpful fear-stoking. We should always strive for better. Being complacent and not believing in our own abilities is never going to create fulfillment and happiness.

    3. Petrichor of Hades*

      +1, and congrats to you!

      It took the better part of the year, but I was able to leave my dysfunctional workplace for a job I’ve always wanted at a great org. During 2020, I was able to take on some freelance (remember, some companies have benefited from the pandemic) and focus a lot of energy on improving my resume, applying for jobs, and prepping for interviews. I sent out at least a hundred applications and made to the final or penultimate round in the interview process for several orgs. I was starting to lose hope until at the end of year when I got an offer from a great org.

      My former employer used the excuse “no one is hiring now” to convince themselves that no one would leave and therefore they could treat us badly, but it’s simply untrue. I wasn’t the only one to leave after being hired elsewhere, and everyone in the company outside of executive positions is actively looking.

      Job seekers right now should know that putting their hand in the ring even though the competition is so tough is a mark of courage. And if you do your due diligence in interviews, you should be able to get a beat on how the company handled its pandemic response and how stable it is now. Of course, those who hate their jobs will want to get out asap, but it’s important to take it slow and steady to not burn out in job searching.

    4. ThatGirl*

      I wasn’t super thrilled in my last job but I was planning to stay until things evened out with covid etc, and then I got laid off in November. And I have to say I was optimistic about my skills but not the job market – but I got lucky; the right opportunity presented itself, I killed it on the interviews, and I got an offer exactly 4 weeks after I was laid off, at a better, more stable company with an 18% or so raise. It can happen.

    5. Mel_05*

      That’s great!

      I am grateful to be in a job I love during the pandemic, because pre-pandemic I was stuck in a job I hated and it took me 3 years of solid job searching to get out. I can’t imagine trying to do it now.

  3. Elementary Fan*

    Very helpful, thanks Alison! Manageable workload is what I’m looking for and I’ve brought this up with my boss for maybe 5 months now so it might be time to start looking.

  4. Cordoba*

    At a previous job my response to being in a job I hated was “I’m going to find out just how far I can push this place before I get fired.” I figured I was going to quit soon regardless so the end result was the same either way, except if they canned me I could apply for unemployment.

    I just stopped doing the parts of the job I didn’t like, which largely meant dropping a bunch of non-valuable busywork and no longer pretending to agree with management’s flavor of the month strategic matrix synergy development initiatives.

    It turns out that not only did I not get fired, but the job became so much more fun that I didn’t want to leave and I stuck around for another couple of years.

    If you’re thinking of quitting anyway (and can afford it) my recommendation is to try working a few weeks like post-hypnosis Peter in “Office Space” and see what develops. What are they going to do, fire you from a job you were going to leave? That’s really not too bad of an outcome.

    1. BubbleTea*

      This strategy could really foul up your reference from that employer in the future, though. I’m glad it worked out for you but it seems extremely risky to me.

      1. Ask a Manager* Post author

        Yes — worst that can happen is that you torpedo your reputation and don’t get references, job leads, etc. from anyone you worked with there, and maybe even that people actively warn off others from working with you.

    2. Person from the Resume*

      While I agree that you don’t want to torpedo a reference “no longer pretending to agree with management’s flavor of the month strategic matrix synergy development initiatives” isn’t bad behavior. It could possibly torpedo a reference from a bad boss, but respectfully disagreeing and honest feedback should be a positive not negative.

    3. Ferret*

      “What are they going to do, fire you from a job you were going to leave? That’s really not too bad of an outcome.”

      If you can’t find another job very quickly (which will be difficult if you can’t get a good reference) and don’t have significant savings to fall back on then getting fired could actually be very bad

      1. Cordoba*

        In the case I’m describing, the employee has already made up their mind that they are so unhappy they’re going to quit. Either way they’re going to be without an income from their employer soon.

        Obviously if you have no saving and have marginal employment prospects beyond your current employer you need to play ball with them; but in that context just quitting probably isn’t an option either.

        You also need to know how your industry works with respect to references. If a bad comment from one previous boss is enough to tank your career then this isn’t a good strategy.

        1. Carriage*

          Yeah, this probably works* in fields with a high level of dysfunction and poor management and if you are very low down, limited in scope, and applying for similarly low level work after this job ends. Anyone looking at a better job is well advised to steer clear of this sort of behavior.

          *for a value of works = not completely screwing you over

    4. Andrea*

      I get where you’re coming from, and I think the two things you’ve listed — busywork that doesn’t add value and (basically) butt-kissing — are good examples. I think they go along with the excerpt that was posted the other day, about being a “slacker”.

      I hate my job, and my dumpster fire of a company has “strongly encouraged” anyone who considers themselves “team players” to work from the office, against our local health department order. No one wears masks. I’ve brought this up to my boss, HR, everything, and nothing has changed. So I decided not to be a “team player”. I’m not risking my health for a job I hate at a company with such blatant disregard for its employees.

      But I’m still working the expected hours, and I probably won’t be skipping meetings or taking apart my cubicle walls anytime soon. :-) So I think there’s a balance.

    5. Generic Name*

      Oh, so you must be my coworker who openly complains about being unhappy and basically does what he wants while the rest of us spend hours fixing his screw ups on projects because he just didn’t want to do something. Glad to know this job is much more “fun” for you now.

      1. MissDisplaced*

        It’s ironic that this is the exact kind of thing executive managers typically get rewarded for though.

        Outsourcing work (to agencies or other companies) they don’t want to be bothered with.
        Getting other people to do in-house busywork they don’t want to do.
        Choosing to focus on high-value work that brings in revenue regardless of what company initiatives may say. (If you can bring in high-dollar revenue and contracts right now you will be golden).

        1. Generic Name*

          I see what you’re saying but there’s a difference between effective delegation and not doing your job. In my coworker’s case, I’ll tell him “do it x way” (I am senior to him) and he will be all “yeah sure” and then do something else. He’s not delegating or “working smart”, he’s just doing whatever the hell he wants

  5. Volunteer Enforcer*

    It is possible to find a better job even during these times. August 2020, I was offered a job that still has flaws of its’ own, but they are flaws I can live with and overall it is an improvement over the old one.

  6. Pretzelgirl*

    I don’t necessarily feel trapped. At actually really like my job. But I haven’t had a pay raise in a while I don’t want to ask bc our organization is just getting by. I feel bad asking.

  7. CCSF*

    I was furloughed on 7/31 and started a new job 9/28. New Job is a better fit (even though I wasn’t unhappy at Old Job) and an 8% pay increase. It was the equivalent of a FT job while I was searching, but it can absolutely be done.

    Also, I’ve never set foot in a building for New Job as the entire company is still WAH. Loads of places have adapted and are hiring 100% virtually. There’s hope!!

  8. yup yup*

    I have it so good right now on a lot of levels – my pay is good, my work/life balance is EXTREMELY good, I am WFH 100% (my preference), I have a lot of vacation time.

    I still hate my job and can’t wait to find another one… management changes have tanked my morale and there’s definitely no coming back from that. Plus they make it sound like we could all get let go at any moment. I dread work now.

    It’s just going to be hard to find a new that ticks all of the “good” boxes I’m currently ticking off. But I’ve got my resume ready and I’m putting together my portfolio. I’m just going to apply for jobs and see what happens.

    1. MamaSarah*

      This is my situation in a nut shell! Recents changes in leadership were an absolute buzz kill. I’m coasting along, one month at time. I can’t help but bring my best to my field work and support by colleagues but I’ve given up on our work place culture.
      On a related note, I spoke with our union recently and learned that Supervisors are prohibited from giving references. My technical work speaks for itself, so I decided there is no incentive to hold our Sup’s hand as they figure out how to do their job. This has been incredibly freeing.

    2. cncx*

      this is where i am at, i love my company’s response to the pandemic, they’ve done an amazing job with wfh (i should also say we because i work in IT) and i have a lot of flexibility.
      BUT they blew up my team, threw me on a team that has nothing to do with my day to day job description, and don’t really know what i am doing now that my boss is gone and i too feel like i could get let go at any moment. My morale is down the drain and a lot of trust is broken.

  9. MissDisplaced*

    I don’t totally hate my job and I’m not what I’d call miserable. But I still feel unhappy with a lot of the changes that are going on at work and, as a direct result of those changes, I now feel very underutilized and like many of my hard won/earned skills atrophying because I am not allowed to use them (which also makes it harder to find another job). Literally, I am forced to handoff things I could easily and quickly do myself to a department I have zero management control over that takes forever and doesn’t really understand what needs to get done. It’s become so frustrating.

  10. Amber Rose*

    I don’t know how to help my husband. His boss is fine, but he works for health care and the government hates everyone who works for health care so his situation just keeps getting more dire and he feels like setting boundaries is impossible. He’s applying to other jobs but that has been going nowhere. :(

    What do you do when you hate your job and there are no good parts and also your job hates you back but you can’t leave?

    1. Kara S*

      I would think he needs to look into switching industries. If going back to school isn’t an option, there are a lot of career paths that don’t need a degree or could potentially be adjacent to his current position. Plus right now is the best time to try and do any form of online certification.

      If there’s absolutely no good parts of a job and he hates everything about it, it doesn’t seem sustainable for long term mental health for him to stay there.

    2. Aggretsuko*

      Put up with it, unfortunately?

      I wish there was a better answer than “put up with it, quit, hope a miracle occurs, play the lottery,” but….

    3. Anon for this*

      My husband is also in healthcare and he is also miserable. I don’t know what you mean by “the government hates everyone who works for health care” but I do know that the healthcare system is really broken and HCPs pay a huge emotional toll as they simultaneously grind themselves into the ground to help patients and watch those same patients not get everything they need to thrive. It was enough to drive anyone nuts *before* the pandemic. Unfortunately, the two previous commenters outline the only choices we can see: leave the industry, or suck it up. Neither is great. Both are possible. I’m sorry. :(

      1. Amber Rose*

        Because I’m Canadian, and our current provincial government wishes it didn’t have to spend money on our healthcare system so instead they’re abusing doctors and docking everyone’s pay in a drive to prove we don’t need any of them. :/

        It’s the worst.

        1. PT*

          There’s a pretty big shortage of doctors in lots of countries, if you’re up for immigration, he can probably find a WAY better gig elsewhere.

    4. Alternative Person*

      I would say its important to put aside as much of the job bad as possible and focus on good stuff outside the job. Allow ten minutes or something to vent or write in a diary or something then go and do something fun to take your mind off it, like play a game or do some exercise or have a vid call party.

  11. Bookworm*

    I’m there. I went from feeling really happy and grateful to have this job (it represented a step up and pay bump) to having the Sunday scaries and feeling sad when Saturday is gone (one day closer to the next workweek).

    Been feeling restless even before the pandemic and I know part of it is also the pandemic itself. It’s just been exacerbated by multiple issues also out of my control plus a general feeling I want to do something else. Some of the tips in the response were helpful: working on projects that were outside of my usual lane but were interesting, taking full advantage (maybe too much?) of some of the flexibility I and my co-workers been given for the pandemic, etc.

    The last paragraph is also true: my organization is hiring and has been hiring during the pandemic (we have had genuine need because of expected departures and where we are in our cycle of work), so don’t fret if you’re still looking. It might be harder for everyone because of the logistics but places are hiring.

    1. AlmostNotCertain*

      I definitely feel this. I feel grateful to have a job with a good boss, flexibility, and good pay. I certainly appreciate those things about my job, so I feel guilty that I find my job unfulfilling. On top of that, I feel like the expectations of me and my coworkers from our management are so high, and I think that’s the most crushing thing to me, just the constant feeling of needing to perform highly but having little motivation to do so.

      +1 on feeling restless before the pandemic and even more so because of it. I am trying to focus on the positives and make the most of an already good situation.

  12. Laney Boggs*

    I appreciate the success stories you guys are sharing, and I hope it’s me soon!!

    Unfortunately there isn’t much to save my job – the pay is crap, my coworkers are mostly conspiracy theorists, the job is so dull I’ve cried of boredom…. etc.

    The only bright spot is it’s so dull I can spend HOURS slacking off, and now that I work from home the possibilities for slacking are endless. But even that has its downsides in that I’m making a habit of being on my phone and watching TV all day

  13. Rhymetime*

    This article is so timely for me. I posted in the Friday open thread that while I’m actively looking for another job, in the meantime I am struggling to stay motivated and accomplish my work in my current position. I’m really appreciating Alison’s advice and I’m reading all the comments as well for guidance about hanging in there and getting my work done until I eventually find something else.

  14. Miserable*

    I left a job I really liked (and was very good at) after they made a business decision that doubled my already too much workload. It made me miserable for the year it took me to find something else. Just before the lockdown I accepted what I thought was going to be a great job — the chance to use my skills and expertise, a pay increase, similar benefits. It was a huge mistake. I dread going to work every day. I don’t like my co-workers, I don’t like the commute, I don’t have the resources I need to do my job, I feel like a failure. The person who hired me was terminated a few months after I started, the new supervisor doesn’t know what they’re doing. I try to focus on the fact that at least I’m getting paid more, but honestly I’d rather go back to my old salary and not be miserable in every other facet. I work in the cultural sector so it was already hard to find jobs and this has been exacerbated by the pandemic. I want to quit every day.

  15. Andrea*

    I just quit a job at public school because the teacher I was supporting was so awful that, for the first time in my life, I was having chest pains and high blood pressure problems. She changed my schedule three times in less than two months, did not properly prepare lessons and then yelled at me like it was my fault, pushed an ELL child so hard he cried and then told him to suck it up, and referred to our learning impaired students as “m.r.”. And that’s just the beginning of the problems, to say nothing of the daily stress of wearing a mask and dealing with children. I had no autonomy or ability to get her to change her ways. I feel bad for the kids, but I reported her to our department director and HR. No amount of money was going to make that job worth it.

    1. An Internet stranger*

      That’s so despicable that a teacher can behave that way at challenged kids. I, an internet stranger, is so proud of you for reporting her. Hope they do something about that behavior. I’m keeping my fingers crossed for a wonderful job for you when you are ready.

  16. Lil Fidget*

    One of the hardest things for me about being in a job I hated was that I just could *not* work up the energy and motivation to commit to a job search. I work in a field where jobs aren’t plentiful and applying is always a huge endeavor without a lot of callbacks. The thought of working at a job I didn’t like all day and then coming home to spend the evening applying fruitlessly seemed like almost more than I could take.

    1. hmm*

      This really resonated with me. I also work in a field where job openings were hard to come by even during good economic times (pre-covid), and I had a 3 hour long commute every day to work. After 8 hours of work + the 3 hour commute, I was so wiped out that I had no energy to search for jobs that I probably wouldn’t get a call back for.

      Thankfully, now that I am working remotely, I have more time to myself. This has meant that I could not only apply to new jobs, but also take classes during my free time to advance my skills.

    2. C*

      This is me right now. I start tearing up when I even think about sitting down to spend hours applying to positions that could earn me a living wage because it feels like an exercise in futility after years off-and-on trying to break out of retail.

    3. Aggretsuko*

      It is more than I can take. Job hunting makes me feel like inadequate crap (plus I am just not interested even slightly in most jobs I see), so after feeling like inadequate crap for 8 hours, I’m not in the mood to feel like shit all night long as well.

      1. Lil Fidget*

        I feel ya. In my field, most of the applications are through a terrible online portal that demands too much information, and have “extra steps” like essays or sample products – none of which will even be used, because I’m probably getting rejected by the “required salary” information anyway. It’s heartbreaking to keep trying. Yet, in the end, it’s the only way to get out.

    4. Miss Bookworm*

      This is me too! My field is recession proof, but also not easy to job search in. I’ve been so overworked for a couple years now, even worse this year though. I had just started job hunting in February (even looking outside my industry) when my manager announced she was leaving and then COVID of course. They never replaced her, and my boss is unreliable. I’m basically on my own juggling my own work (where I’m doing the work of multiple people) plus supervising three others, one of whom just started three months ago so he’s still being trained by me, which is slow going because I don’t have the time to dedicate fully. The other two have both been here a year and had no prior experience in this field, so they still need a lot of supervision… and I never signed up for this, but I have 8 years of experience to their combined 2… I was very vocal about not wanting to be a manager, yet here I am. I’m burned out. It’s all I can just to get up for work in the morning. I have no energy after work to do more work job hunting. I don’t even have the energy to make dinner. And I’m so stressed that I’m not sleeping well (it’s 1am and here I am typing this instead of sleeping). I’m seriously considering quitting without a job lined up. I have really tried to get help at work and I’m just ignored, so why keep fighting the inevitable?

  17. Bob*

    I am laughing at the top comment on Slate:
    Lisa, if you don’t like your job you don’t strike. You just go in every day and do it really half-assed. That’s the American way (Homer Simpson)

    I’m sure Alison loves this advice :D

  18. Lawrence U*

    This was me! Stuck out of a sense of loyalty and guilt. Trying to do it all and then more whenever it was added. I thought i could only move into a role after I furthered my education and any role I could see myself taking was a step back.
    I took the plunge 3 weeks ago and have been at the new place for a week. What a night and day difference. Going from a haphazard catch all role to having clearly defined focus and corporate structure was what i needed. Make the move and free your mind.

  19. Tiny Magnolia*

    But here’s the catch:

    “I am also part of the state retirement system which I already have 17 years into, and if I stayed in my job for 13 more years I could retire with 30 years of service at age 55.”

    When you have completely different retirement systems, it’s not as simple as just leaving a job.

    Has Alison ever covered this issue???

  20. anony for this one*

    I find this advice kind of disappointing.
    For context: I loathe my job and have been looking for a new one for several years. My new years resolution for 2020 was to quit my job, even without something new … but then the pandemic hit. (My savings would get me through an ordinary unemployed time, but not now.)
    I don’t like my job because I don’t believe in the mission of the organization. That’s not something within my control.
    I’m not staying because of fear or because other jobs seem risky, but because *I haven’t been offered any other jobs,* despite applications and some interviews. My industry is struggling right now, and even looking beyond it, the entire economy is a mess.
    Yes, some people will get new jobs. But there literally aren’t enough jobs in this economy for everyone. How do we cope with *that*?

  21. COVID Career Change*

    I lost a job I hated due to the pandemic and tried to treat it as a blessing as I felt I had stayed too long. I was lucky enough to pick up another job quickly, but the whole process triggered a sort of mid-life crisis (I’m THIS old and only make THIS much?)

    Now, I’m in the process of changing careers. I don’t hate this job but I don’t want to stay here long or keep getting similar jobs (low-paying art/culture non-profits). I’m hoping the fear of ending up broke and old and alone keeps me going.

  22. BlackCatOwner*

    This piece is really timely for me. I hate my job but until I get a new one, it’s the job I’ve got and I’m trying to make the best of it. (I’m actively searching). It’s not always easy but I try to think of it as being paid to job hunt!

  23. Totally the real Santa*

    My problem is that I don’t get to do the work I was hired for. In the beginning I worked on a few projects, but then the business changed, and focused more on the part of the job that I am not good at, and I don’t enjoy anyway. There were all kinds of promises. “Next project will be yours. When we get the order from XYZ, there will be tons of work for you to do” etc. I believed them every time, and I waited patiently. But it never happened. We got the orders, but because I’m not one of the cool kids, I just never got the chance to get involved. Years went by, and I pretty much gave up. So now I’m just good enough to help out with the crappy tasks.
    Basically, I have gained no new skills or experience since then. Now I’m 42 with less experience in my field than my 26 year old colleagues. Which makes finding a new job impossible.

  24. Hit my head Glass Ceiling*

    How do you talk to your boss when you would be happier if you were doing the same job but reporting to someone else? Not sure there is a good way to express that without hurt feelings.

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