Does Your Career Spark Joy? Take the QUIZ….

clement-m-547072-unsplash (1).jpg

With the Netflix’s series Tidying Up with Marie Kondo streaming into living rooms across the country, many people have started asking which of their possessions spark joy and which do not. Whatever you may think of Kondo’s method of tidying up your physical surroundings, there is no question that her driving question can also be useful when considering the non-material aspects of your life, specifically your career.

Granted, some days, asking “Does my job spark joy?” may be too high a bar. Every role and every company come with frustrations, and it is neither wise nor realistic to expect round-the-clock joyfulness. But your job should bring you joy – or at least a thrill – much of the time. Even thinking about work on down days should elicit something positive – whether it’s excitement, challenge, long-term fulfillment, connection, growth, or something else that matters to you. If the work you’re doing now sparks only relief that you’re getting a paycheck, it’s likely time to start thinking about your next step. 

Here’s one thing I know for sure: if your job elicits a feeling of dread, then you need to start discovering a better fit. 

Many people’s thoughts about their careers fall somewhere in between utter joy and abject dread, which means it’s not always obvious whether finding new work is the right thing to do. Also, not everyone wants the same thing from a career, so cookie-cutter advice is rarely helpful. But questions that clarify your own thinking ARE usually helpful, so here’s a short quiz to help you determine whether it’s time to move on: 

1. Which word best describes how you feel on Sunday night when you think about going to work the next morning?

A. Excited

B. Happy

C. Bored

D. Tired

E. Anxious and/or depressed

___________________________________________________________________________________________

2. When someone asks you about your work, how do you respond?

A. You talk so eagerly about your work that sometimes you worry you bore people.

B. You’re happy to talk about your work, but you’re more curious about what they do.

C. You tell them briefly what you do and then change the subject.

D. You give a two-word description and roll your eyes and shrug as if to say, “It’s work, what can you do?”

E. You launch into a rant about everything about your job that makes you miserable.

___________________________________________________________________________________________

3. Which best describes how you feel when you check work email outside of normal working hours?

A. Eager

B. Mildly interested

C. Indifferent

D. Annoyed

E. Full of dread

___________________________________________________________________________________________

4. How would you describe your relationship with your colleagues?

A. They are the best group of people you’ve ever worked with – competent, responsible, and respectful.

B. They do good work, but sometimes interactions are difficult.

C. They’re OK, but sometimes you feel like they have lower standards than you do.

D. You feel like you have to mask your personality at work – there’s a way of interacting and operating that doesn’t fit you.

E. You can’t stand the people you work with.

__________________________________________________________________________________________

5. When was the last time you worked on a project that made you want to stay late because it was so much fun?

A. Within the last month

B. Between 2 - 6 months ago

C. Between 7 - 12 months ago

D. There are no “fun” projects

E. You run from work as fast as you can

__________________________________________________________________________________________

6. How would you describe your relationship with your boss?

A. Your boss provides clear guidance, trusts your judgment, and supports your learning and development.

B. Pretty good. Your boss is generally supportive, but you don’t always know what is expected of you.

C. Your boss isn’t the worst you’ve ever had.

D. You try to avoid interacting with your boss as much as possible.

E. Your boss makes your life miserable.

__________________________________________________________________________________________

7. In terms of challenge, how would you rate your current work?

A. You get to stretch yourself often.

B. You enjoy and are good at just about everything you do.

C. You’re on cruise control most of the time.

D. It’s a challenge to get motivated to do what you’re supposed to do.

E. You barely have the strength to show up every day.

_________________________________________________________________________________________

8. When was the last time you had the chance to learn and practice a significant new skill at work?

A. Within the last month

B. Between 2 - 6 months ago

C. Between 7 - 12 months ago

D. You can’t remember

E. New skills would mean more work, and that’s the last thing you want

________________________________________________________________________________________

9. Why did you take your current position?

A. It was an exciting opportunity

B. You liked the people, the perks, and the reputation of the organization

C. They promoted you, and you accepted

D. You just sort of fell into it

E. It was the least bad choice you had

________________________________________________________________________________________

10. Overall, how would you describe how you feel about your work?

A. Jazzed

B. Content

C. OK

D. Unhappy

E. You hate it

_______________________________________________________________________________________

Scoring and Feedback

For each answer, add up the numbers associated with the letter:

  1. 4
  2. 3
  3. 2
  4. 1
  5. 0

If you scored…

35 – 40            Work is awesome. You get to learn and grow and be yourself at the office. What could be better? Take advantage of this enviable situation to learn as much about yourself as you can and develop new skills that seem like a good fit for your strengths, motivations, and preferences. If you use this time well, you will set yourself up to go anywhere you want. 

21 – 34            Work is fine, and it may even be enjoyable. However, it’s likely you’ve stopped growing. If comfort is what you want right now, then you may be in the right spot. But don’t stay too long. The world is changing too quickly for any of us to be complacent where we are. Now is an important time to start researching what your next chapter might be. 

7 – 20              Work falls somewhere between “eh” and “ugh.” While it may have felt right once upon a time, at this point, you’re either bored or unhappy. It’s highly likely that everyone around you senses your malaise, so it’s important to discover a new role before you damage your reputation. You don’t want to be the person everyone else wishes would leave.

0 – 6                Work is miserable. Coming up with an exit plan should be your chief priority right now, because your unhappiness at work is almost certainly affecting all areas of your life. A downward spiral can be very hard to reverse, so draw on all the resources you have to figure out how to get out of your current situation. Taking care of yourself physically during this time, by eating well and getting enough sleep and exercise, is very important. Seek the help of others – your friends, family, and a therapist – rather than trying to do this on your own.

If you know it's time to make a change but you aren't sure where to start, register for our free trial - https://arcvida.com/Register

Published on 2/13/2019