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How to Make the Best of a Bad Job

written by: •edited by: Linda Richter•updated: 12/24/2010

If you are stuck in a job you loathe because of schedule restrictions, lack of opportunity, or for any other reason, going to work every day can be miserable. Learning how to make the best of a bad job will help you get through until you can make a change for the better.

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    Learn New Skills

    Studying for a Test 

    Without leaving your current position, find ways to learn some new skills and abilities that will help you find a better job in the future. Don't turn down any type of training offered at your place of business, even if you do not need the knowledge currently. Not only might this training increase your chances of finding a more pleasant job elsewhere, but it will also make you more valuable to your current employer. This could lead to a promotion or other internal job offer you might enjoy.

    If your employer does not offer any type of advanced training or if you need to learn specific skills to obtain the job of your dreams, take steps to get the education you need. Even if you can only take one or two classes at a time, it will be a step in the right direction. Knowing that you are doing something that will ultimately allow you to leave will help you to make the best of a bad job.

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    Discover Networking Opportunities

    Business Card 

    It is important to recognize that the people you speak to or email each day can be fundamental in your search for a better job. While it is vital that you always behave in an ethical manner, you may wish to take note if a client, customer, or vendor mentions a job opening that would better suit you. You can also inform acquaintances that your dream career is a job within their field or company. This may just resonate with the right person who will give you an inside tip when they learn of an opening.

    Another approach you can use is to ask job-related acquaintances for business cards or contact information. Let them know that you are working toward a new career and inquire whether you may get in touch or use them as references down the road. If you have an amiable relationship, most will be glad to assist you.

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    Be Part of the Solution


    When thinking about how to make the best of a bad job, consider whether there are positive changes that you could help bring about. Offer to help establish team building exercises to generate a more positive work environment. Analyze your attitude and make a conscious effort to leave a negative outlook at the door. Focus on the aspects of your job that you enjoy, or at the very least that you don't hate. Set small, attainable goals for yourself to thwart the feeling that you are spinning your wheels but not getting anywhere. Not only will these optimistic actions help tide you over until you can find a better job, they may even make your current job worth keeping.

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    Make Time to Unwind

    Finally Holidays 

    When you are not at work, make sure you allow yourself time to relax and unwind. Decompress from the stress and pressure of your job by pursuing a hobby. Exercise is a great way to blow off steam, as well. Not only does it allow you to release some of your pent-up tension and anxiety, but getting physical can release endorphins in your brain that will actually improve your mood.

    While you are discovering how to make the best of a bad job, remember that it is just a job and your circumstances are temporary. Then, go home, put your feet up, and enjoy your life.

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    Image Credits

    Studying for a Test:

    Business Card: Lary

    Optimism: R

    Finally Holidays: Faes