What To Do If You Don’t Want To Go To Work

Life is very nerve-wracking. There is no other way to put it. You have to grow up, prove yourself, work things out, pay bills, get a job to pay those bills, maintain that job to maintain a house, and buy yourself all these things corporations keep putting out. (Yes, I want that weird-looking lamp, I don’t care if it’s useless. This is the era of aesthetics).

What To Do If You Don't Want To Go To Work

But sometimes, all of it makes no sense. Or doesn’t matter actually. You wake up and you feel like absolute shit. You want to do nothing but roll over and fall asleep again. But your brain is up and about, berating you for feeling like missing work. But it is also making it sound so tempting – a day away from everyone when they are all busy being a slave to capitalism. 

Do you not deserve a break? You do! It’s a weird thought process, you want to sleep but you cannot imagine missing a day of work. It would just make it tough for you. 

However, you have to take care of yourself. Sometimes you have to catch a break, rest your body, rest your mind.  

It’s a stressful world

Jeff Bezos Career Advice
Jeff Bezos Career Advice

In today’s fast-paced world, it is not uncommon to not have time for oneself. On a superficial level, we may feel like going out with friends may account for us not working, but the truth is, as long as our body is up and running about throughout the day, we are working. 

There’s a tweet that truly reflects this entire quandary. Paraphrasing it here – “keep giving your body and brain rest or else it will start taking it in future.”

Simply put, if you do not let your body and brain heal from your lifestyle, you will end up suffering in the future in terms of health; imagine all sorts of ailments and mental disorders.

You still have time. Make sure to take some time off for yourself, spend a lazy day in. Call your friends, go running, pick up that hobby that brought you joy. 

When you come back to things after a while, your body feels renewed and ready. Come back to your state of rest every once in a while and then go back to work ready to face it with clarity. It is very important to function in today’s world which is dynamic and instantaneous. Things come and go before you can blink, and the pressure to keep up with things, to perform well, to earn more to be comfortable in your life – all of this adds to the pressure. We as humans aren’t built for such a system but we have somehow ended up here. So now we have to adapt to it somehow. Here are a few ways you can do so. 

I simply feel tired today. 

You can –

Take a day off. Call in sick if possible. Order your favorite food, watch a movie, or meet with a friend. Treat it like an extra holiday you happened upon by chance. 

However, if you are unable to call in sick or do not have the amenities to skip work, make sure to treat yourself when you are on your way home. Buy a good meal, or take the longer route home, or go partying. Whatever makes you feel the most relaxed, do it. Plan a lovely day in the future when you will have your day off.

I have been feeling this way for a while now.

Has work been too stressful? Are you feeling overworked and exhausted all the time? Here are a few things you can try doing –

  1. If you are in a team and they have a good rapport with you, then talk about this with them. Let them know how you are having a tough week and if they could reduce your workload. Oftentimes, we are afraid of speaking up because we feel like a lot is riding on us, but here’s a secret, we’re all going through the same thing, going the same way. Communication is the key, and if you get your problems heard, you will reach a solution.
  1. Take ample breaks in your office. Walk around, exercise your body, eat healthily. Make use of your break and just relax.
  1. Call your trusted friend. Make plans for later. 
  1. Take care of yourself, make a schedule that allows you enough rest.
  1. Only take up enough work which will not stress you out. Understandably, you want to perform well in the workplace but this shouldn’t put your mental health at stake. 

It is your life, and you should be in charge of it. Make a few changes to ease up your life and so that you have enough space to sit and breathe and enjoy existing on this lonely planet. 

I Feel Like This Job Isn’t the Right Fit for Me

This can be another reason why you don’t enjoy going to work anymore. Maybe you’ve been stuck in the same job, in the same position for longer than necessary, or maybe your career isn’t going in the direction you thought it would.

What can you do in such a situation?

  1. Re-evaluate your career. Do you enjoy working where you’re working? Or is it your career that is making you unhappy? There is a distinction between these two. If you are not satisfied with your field of work, you will be dissatisfied in any workplace. 
  2. If you are unhappy with your work environment, we highly suggest you make a list of things which are responsible for it, so that you can know what to avoid in your new workplace.
  3. If it is your job that is making you stressed, you should step back, resign and take a break for a while. Starting over is hard, but if you have enough faith in yourself and a good support system, it is not impossible.
  4. If you can’t afford to quit your job, make time for your interests and pursue them actively. Make sure you do one thing for yourself each week. Meet your friends often, eat food that brings you joy. When you try stimulating a happy life for yourself, you start making peace with your worries.

I have fought with a colleague/I dislike my co-workers 

This is a very common scenario where you have some sort of problem with one of your co-workers. Here’s what you can do in such a situation – 

  1. If you have merely been having arguments, then you can try avoiding that person as much as you can in the workplace. 
  2. If it is a professional dispute, and you want to avoid conflict, take it to management/HR.
  3. If you are feeling uncomfortable because of someone in your office and are wary of telling someone about it (maybe they’re a senior, maybe you are scared – it’s possible) you can write an email with a firm explanation. You should not let such things slide by.
  4. If possible, get your work area shifted from their vicinity, or ask for a different shift. Sometimes people can be unbearable and make it difficult for you to work.

The Above Solutions Don’t Apply to Me –

Are these not the answers you were looking for? Do you think it is a little beyond this? Then maybe you are actively struggling – which sounds like a funny phrase, but it happens when you have kept pushing your problems under the bed and ignoring them. They have now festered and turned into something bigger. But there is always a solution.

How to figure out if you are merely tired of having burnout?

Here are a few ways of figuring it out. Go over these questions carefully. 

  1. Are you always tired when you come home and have to take a few moments before getting up to clean yourself? 
  2. Would you go to sleep on your couch, in your work clothes if nobody stopped you?
  3. Do you often feel demotivated while on your job?
  4. Do you have to spend a few minutes every morning convincing yourself that you have to go to work because it is necessary?
  5. Have you lost your urge to pursue your hobbies or other activities? 

If you have answered yes to three questions, then maybe you should talk to a professional. This is by no means a psychological evaluation, but it is indeed a strong indication that you are on the verge of burnout and you should avoid such things when there is time. 

If you are hesitant about going to a mental health professional, you can always talk to a trusted person in your life – be it a family member or a good friend. Sometimes, a shoulder and an ear are all we need to get our affairs in order. But if they too encourage you to go to a professional, please remember that there is no shame in doing so. Everyone has different kinds of struggles and different levels of coping with things. It is never wrong to ask for help, of any kind. 

You should try to analyze things happening in your life, your relationship with people, and classify them into different boxes. Try the Mary Kondo method, but a little expanded. Make different columns – This Sparks Joy, This Does Not Spark Joy, I Can Do Without This In My Life, Undecided, I Won’t Care If This Disappeared. This will make it easier for you to gain back power in your life. Make some major changes. It can be something Sex and The City-esque where you purge your wardrobe or it can be more internal and you decide to cut some people off in your life. 

Eventually, no matter how tired you are or not, you do deserve to feel good about being alive. If you have holidays you need to use up, take them right now! Go to some small, remote place, sleep and laze around. Take that one trip you have been planning with your friends since college. Visit your mother if you want to. Everyone merits a break; you don’t have to prove you are at your breaking point to be allowed room to breathe. 

We Are All Struggling

  1. Ever since this pandemic has hit us, we have all become very isolated. The situations we have had to face or seen others go through have made us wary of existence and have also terrified us. Jobs have been lost, people have had to move back home, give up on things and dreams. This has increased the anxiety we feel about our work-life especially because it determines a lot of other things in our life. Working from home has made us feel disconnected from ourselves because we are not complete without authentic human interaction. 
  2. Try going out, talking to people. Switch the route on your way to work, or make a new ritual – something like how you will buy flowers for yourself every Tuesday or how you will save up enough to go somewhere at the end of each month. We eventually have our responsibilities in our hands and we should try to be better
  3. Having a mundane everyday schedule makes us believe in the false notion that life does not have a lot to offer. We should get out there, make an effort to our best abilities, and make it a better life for ourselves. 

To sum up, here are a few more things you should keep in mind if you don’t want to go to work-

  1. It will be okay if you skip a workday; you aren’t the screw on which the company is hinged. Take a break.
  2. Have a couple of friends who will check up on you. Check on them in return. It is better when you are not alone. 
  3. Take care of your body. Eat well, drink enough water, take up some hobby. Have something that you can look forward to. Get a pet if you can.
  4. Take enough breaks every day so that you have a little recharge to go through life.
  5. There is no shame in struggling or asking for help – whether professional or otherwise. Save yourself from inevitable worries and issues – talk to someone.
  6. Remind yourself you are always more than just your job. You weren’t born with a resume and files to finish. Revisit childhood interests, comfort food, and other things which will remind you that you started in a safer place and that it is always okay to go back there to cope. 
  7. Sometimes a good day constitutes of being lazy and watching random shows on the television. It is sometimes you dress up with nowhere to go. Enjoy these moments.
  8. No matter how cheesy this sounds, you have to take it one day at a time. It is not a big deal if you do not plan your next five years right now. Focus on the now. Plan your meals, your days, your life in a way that brings you happiness and ease of mind and does not make you feel like you are missing out on the grandness of life – we are struggling; there is no such thing as a perfectly stable life, we are after all on a floating rock amongst thousand others which are just like it. 

Take it easy. It will be fine. 

What To Do If You Don’t Want To Go To Work

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