Feel Blah At Work? Try These Ideas

ON THE JOB

July 24, 2009|By Hanah Cho | Hanah Cho,hanah.cho@baltsun.com

Do you feel uninspired at work? Do you have more frequent blah moments? Do you count the minutes until lunch break or until you can leave the office?

With job cuts resulting in increasing workload and stress, it is any surprise you're feeling unmotivated?

But don't expect to get re-energized from your boss or the company because, let's face it, it seems everyone is struggling. You have the power to take control and change your attitude.

Here is some advice from Kathy Bovard, coordinator of the human resources development graduate program at McDaniel College in Westminster, on how to find your work mojo again.

For starters, look for new opportunities and projects that feed your interests and professional goals. Of course, you want to make sure that the added work does not overwhelm you but is something that challenges you.

Seek professional development outside of your job by joining associations or networking groups in your field. It could mean attending workshops and conferences where you can learn new skills, technology and other developments in your industry.

Such involvement could prompt you to go back to school to update your knowledge and skills.

"Taking on a student role can be motivating," Bovard says.

Do a self-assessment and reflect on not only your career but your personal life.

"If you're not feeling like you're motivated, it might signal that you may want to look for something else," Bovard says. "A lot of times when people are feeling consistently blah, it's time to re-evaluate and decide, 'Is this position really a good fit for me?' Maybe it has been, but you've outgrown that position and you need a new challenge."

Part of the self-reflection also involves assessing whether factors outside of work are affecting your attitude and mood at work, Bovard says.

"It could have to do with a relationship, physical or emotional health," she says.

Workplace tidbit: The federal minimum wage will increase 70 cents to $7.25 starting Friday, including in Maryland.

For a full-time employee working 40 hours a week, that means an extra $28 before taxes.

While it seems like good news for workers, some economists are questioning whether raising the minimum wage during the worst economic times since the Depression is the right move. For instance, does the extra labor costs pinch small businesses, which are already dealing with the slowed demand and rising costs?

Let me know what you think.

Send your stories, tips and questions to working@baltsun.com. Please include your first name and your city.

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