Growing research on gratitude shows that the more thankful people are, the happier they are.
Thanksgiving in the U.S. conjures up visions of turkey dinners and pilgrim costumes. It is also a reminder to all of us how important being thankful is, not only for ourselves but to those around us. There is always something to be thankful for…. even your job!
As an executive, you have the pulse of the company in your hands. Looking at your position from several perspectives is helpful to grasp the enormity of the impact you are making on the company, the employees, the customers/clients, and yourself.
Let’s say you are not particularly happy with your job at the moment. What should you do next?
- Don’t lose sight of the impact you have on others. You never know when someone will say to you, “I kept going when I thought my prospects at this company were bleak because I watched how you handled adverse situations and overcame challenges, and knew it was possible for me to do the same.”
- Don’t negate your contributions to the company. While you may not be happy with your current job, in most cases the company is prospering from the actions you take to achieve company goals. You can draw satisfaction that you are a part of that.
- Learn from others. You may have a difficult boss that adds to your discontent. While that is never a pleasant position to be in, learn from this situation so now, or in the future, you can be the type of boss you would like to have.
- Learn from your mistakes. Face it – we all make mistakes from time-to-time. It may cause some people to lose respect or create uncomfortable working relationships. Damage control can only do so much. You have to accept responsibility and then move on as best you can, knowing that this too shall pass.
- You are taking home a paycheck. If nothing else, at the end of the week, you have compensation that pays your bills and adds to your lifestyle comforts. Knowing that this will sustain your way of life, for the time being, is something to be thankful for.
Even if you are unemployed, there are things to be thankful for.
- You have an opportunity to move up in the executive world. You may be down on yourself for not having a job at a critical time of year, holidays upon us, etc. However, look at the brighter side – you can focus on networking and finding just the right position for your next career move which may put you in a higher salary bracket, higher position within an organization, or give you the chance to start your own company.
- You can go back to school. I know, you are an executive, but even executives need to refresh their academic knowledge. You may have always been interested in taking your financial background, and rolling it into an international finance career — that may require going back to school. Or, you want to finally get that master’s degree or technology certification. Whatever your personal goals are, getting some additional education at any time during an executive’s career is worthwhile.
- You can look at Board positions. Perhaps your career thus far hasn’t presented opportunities to be on a Board of Directors. It is a good time to research this option as a career or even a career adjunct. Some Board positions offer excellent compensation, benefits, and bonuses.
- You can teach what you know. Some executives have moved from the business world and started teaching business classes through a variety of venues. You have a volume of knowledge you can share with others and teaching could be something you might consider in the interim or as a future career. Just think of the value you can give to students.
Take a moment to appreciate not only your job but also the other aspects of life that are important to you.