coming soon: the burnout vs hate your job questionnaire

a week or two ago, i stumbled upon this article: are you burnt out (or do you just really hate your job)?. it’s not actually that clear about what burn out is, but i love the idea of being able to determine the different between burn out and hating your job.

so on that note, i think building a short questionnaire or quiz could be helpful for jungle. ross and i talk to people every week (maybe even everyday) who hate what they do for work. it’s unbelievable how many people feel this way. maybe 1 in 10 people that i’ve met in the two years since finishing grad school have said that they didn’t hate their work.

some hate the work itself (meaningless number crunching, pointless or destructive selling of services or unecessary/luxury goods). some hate the environment (terrible bosses, bad management, shitty organizational culture).

now on the other hand, there are some people who actually would like their work if they weren’t so burnt out. many of my nonprofit friends love what they do, but they have to do so much of it that they hate it. or they hate their lives because of the overwork. but that’s still a minority reality.

ok so why does the difference between burnout and hating your job matter?

two reasons:

  1. bell hooks explains in all about love that how we feel at and about our work is a fundamental part of our well-being (see quote below). because we spend so much time doing it, it has a pervasive impact on our time outside of work. when you love your work, the time you spend there allows you to create a positive feedback loop of wellness. the converse is also true. so hating your work/job negatively impacts many parts of your life and diminishes your capacity to be well outside of work. often this is because you have to spend so much energy recovering from and steeling yourself up for work that you’re left with less energy and motivation to bring goodness into the world. this is why “loving what you do” is not a nicety.
  2. i’m beginning to believe that if we can get a large enough mass of people who recognize that they don’t have to work jobs they hate, we can actually undermine the corrupt work structures that allow those shitty jobs to exist in the first place.

so. quiz coming soon.

relevant quotes

The practice of love takes time. Without a doubt, the way we work in this society leaves individuals with little time when they are not physically and emotionally tired to work on the art of loving.
—bell hooks, all about love, chapter: mutuality: the heart of love

[insert other quote about how hooks thought her friends were crazy that she wanted a loving work environment]