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September 23, 2016

Forget the Monday Morning Blues and Find Pleasure in Your Career!

Lucy Bishop

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You've just got into the swing of the weekend and, yep, you've guessed it, Monday's here again. Cue setting alarm clocks, tossing and turning in bed worrying about that early morning presentation, the packed commute. Finally, you're back home… only for it all to start again the next day.

Sometimes we get so caught up in the rigmarole of work that we forget to think about whether it's what we really want to do, or whether we even like doing it!

The Long and Winding Career Path

It took me a while to find the job that I really wanted to do. Like many, I left university optimistic that – after three years of hard study – I would find the job that was meant for me. The world was my oyster after all… I soon came to the realization that actually, no, it wasn't. That, in fact, I wasn't even sure what career I wanted to go into.

Unlike other candidates, I had no hands-on experience for the jobs that I was applying for. I felt lost. I went to several careers fairs, but found no answers. I visited the careers counsellor at my university. No help there, either. She palmed me off with a whole heap of pamphlets that were supposed to help me to pick a career path. In reality, they just added to my confusion.

I started to worry. I mean, choosing the right career was a decision that could affect the rest of my life.

The Difficulty With Choosing the Right Career

OK, I thought to myself, my degree is in English Literature. I love reading, writing and analyzing... so maybe something that combines those three skills. But what? Technically, every job uses reading and writing skills.

Still undecided, I put my worries to one side. I told myself that (at least temporarily) I'd concentrate on getting a job that would tide me over, even if it wasn't what I necessarily wanted to do in the long term. I found myself working in finance and insurance, and had some temporary roles for a bit. The years passed (as they do) and I still felt lost. None of the jobs I had done so far matched up to the high hopes that I had of my career when I left university.

Finally, I decided to return to studying English Literature for a while. From there, I was lucky enough to move into the areas that I wanted to go into and that best suited my skills, namely editing and writing. I began by working at a regional newspaper, before moving into writing business reports for a market research firm, and now… well, now I find myself here and writing to you.

So, all in all, it's turned out better than I expected. I'm in a job that uses the skills I worked hard to develop in my degree. I go home feeling satisfied and challenged and, most importantly, knowing that somehow, after all that, I've found myself on the right track career-wise.

Discovering Work You Love

Perhaps, like me, you feel a bit lost when it comes to your career. Maybe you want to work on projects that more closely suit your passions and interests, or maybe you want to take on new responsibilities in your career.

A brilliant tool called the MPS Process could hold the answer. It can help you to gain useful insight into what makes you truly happy, by prompting you to look more closely at what brings you meaning and pleasure, and what your core strengths are.

According to the MPS Process, if you can find tasks and jobs that combine all three of these elements then you'll likely feel happier and motivated, and be more productive in your career.

As the Chinese philosopher Confucius said, "Find a job you love, and you'll never have to work a day in your life."

So don't give in to those Monday morning blues. Take the time to work out what you love to do… and do it! Use our infographic, which provides a step-by-step guide on how to apply the MPS Process to your life, and discover work that you love.

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