Why falling out of love with work might be the best thing ever for you

Falling out of love with work: work and career counselling Totnes, Paignton and Newton Abbott
 It’s Sunday night. For most of the weekend your mind has been elsewhere but suddenly you become aware of a knotting in the stomach. A tightening of the forehead. A sense of foreboding.

It’s work tomorrow and that doesn’t feel good. Actually it feels terrible.  How did it get to be like this? Somehow you went from passion to the pits almost without

When the shoe feels like it doesn’t fit

You’ll probably be familiar with these sorts of stories about people who’ve had very successful careers and then suffered a deep crisis about who they are and what they are doing with their lives. Maybe that rings true for you too.Perhaps work is a place where you thought you could avoid what’s difficult and painful in your life but the opposite becomes true. Or is  it that your love affair with work has fizzled out and you’re starting to think about being who we really want to be even if it means letting go of what you thought you held most precious (like status, career progression, money.) So what is about work issues?
Knowing when it’s time to quit fighting it
I was reading about Rand Fishkin, founder of Moz, a major social media player. He talks extensively in his blog about the impact of depression on his role as business leader at his company: http://moz.com/rand/long-ugly-year-depression-thats-finally-fading/ He tells the story about the how he was unable to disconnect his own feelings about himself and what was happening to him during a key phase for his business and how his blindness to his feelings led him and his company down a potentially wrong path.In getting some clarity through months of physical and psychological pain, he chose to stand down and make a change in his life, letting go, it seemed, of what he held most dear.What drives you
As a counsellor, one of the most interesting statements in his blog, for me, was ‘I feel like what my Dad always told me I was – a high potential, low achiever kinda kid.’ I don’t know the ins and outs of Rand Fishkin’s story, but it strikes me that the imprint of this message must have been incredibly powerful. Those beliefs carried from childhood can drive us to great extremes, desperate to prove to a parent that the opposite is true, not for the sake of achievement which tends to be a by-product of this feeling, but for a desperate need to be loved truly for who we are.

In extreme cases these feelings can take us on incredible journeys of achievement. But they hold a restlessness within them which success cannot ever quell. Fishkin came to notice through his depression that his predominant feeling was his anxiety and how he held it in his body.

How anxiety is a mask for other feelings
Anxiety is a powerful feeling which can grip you in all sorts of ways. It also masks other deeper feelings below. As a counsellor, I’m curious about what lies behind anxiety and depression because generally that’s where the work of counseling really starts.

Whether it’s fear, unbearable sadness, anger or another feeling, if you don’t attend to it enough, you can end up acting out our anxiety and deeper feelings in extreme ways. Addiction and compulsion, whether sexual, work, alcohol, shopping or drugs are all repetitive ways of trying to quell the anxiety which masks a far more terrifying feeling, which often can not be named as it is so deeply buried and hidden.

Pain, crisis and ultimately failure can be seen as wonderful bittersweet gifts from your unconscious, telling you this life can not continue to be lived in this way. Something needs to change; you might not know what, or how, but there is a voice from within imploring you to make a shift.

Over to you
So how do you know when enough is enough at work? I’d love to hear from you, so why not add a comment below?

Need to find a way through your difficulties at work?
If you’re feeling like you’ve run aground at work, why not book an introductory counselling session? It can provide a safe place to explore and connect with that voice that’s saying change is needed.

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