Underemployment is a common problem during economic recessions. Young people entering the workforce and issues of job security often force workers to stick to jobs they don’t find engaging or challenging.
Here are some tips on handling a job you’re overqualified for:
1. Check your bad attitude. Your job isn’t entirely something that happens to you. Ask yourself, “Where can I make some changes?” Think about areas you’d like to grow into or would find more interesting. Take some plans for new projects to your boss or your company’s HR department. You may have to take on extra work, but if doing so keeps you engaged in your “not-so-fulfilling” tasks, these CV builders will benefit you in the long run.
2. Do a fantastic job. I think the “this job is beneath me” attitude is dangerous because it makes a worker not care and not give his or her all — and no manager is ever going to promote that worker. If you’re bored at work, challenge yourself to find ways to perform better at it.
3. Make a list of the good things about the job. Make sure you’re aware of intangible benefits, and make the most of them. Even consider putting them on a list you can refer to often. Don’t overlook things like the personal connections you’re developing, the new skills or technologies you’re learning, and so on.
4. Space out interesting tasks. Every worker has boring days at work, or boring tasks to take care of on a regular basis. Avoid that down-in-the-dumps feeling by alternating them, if you can, with the tasks you find more fulfilling.
5. Have a plan. Dead-end jobs can make us feel stuck. Develop a clear map of where you want to go — in the long-term and the short-term. Plan definite steps for how you’re going to advance your career, and work within that plan. If you’re unhappy with your job, having some concrete ideas about how you’ll get your dream job will make it more bearable.
It’s important to find fulfillment in life, but the fact is that many people don’t find all their fulfillment at work. Finding fulfillment in the areas of your life you have more control over (that is, your free time) can help immensely.