When you are not happy with your job or career, there is a real pressure to stick it out. Use these tips to break that cycle.
The mantra “Be positive and smile” does little more than ignore the real human experience. To be happy making a living, we cannot ignore what is really going on for the sake of appearances.
After all, putting up a front of being happy is a forced construct that ignores the truth… Negativity happens and work can really be a drag! Happiness and harmony is the goal. We want things to go right for us, always, but in a vain attempt to project the call to “think positively” aren’t we denying what will really bring us peace?
Accepting the reality that people and situations will fail us and that we will do our own failing along the way, too, is more peaceful than absorbing the frustration and flat out deceit attached to the philosophy of “be positive and smile”. Far better it is to think and express ourselves as the situation sees fit and be ready to take evasive action if things aren’t working for us. It will allow us permission to be human and make working with others easier.
Getting out of jams is best done with allies and the frowns the jams cause will come no matter how much you try to “be positive and smile”, so let’s keep it real and make meaningful connections because of it.
“The philosophy of positive thinking means being untruthful; it means being dishonest. It means seeing a certain thing and yet denying what you have seen; it means deceiving yourself and others.” – Osho, philosopher
Rich Hornberger helps people liberate themselves from the social construct too many have allowed to become a prison of employment that is touted as secure. Often, it does not execute that way as many people experience corporate layoffs, downsizing and a general sense of submission instead of command in life. He welcomes them to explore ways to escape the draining pursuit for raises and promotions while presenting a positive front when really, buying a business and “running the show” is what will really make them happy and present options for professional gain superior to even the highest paying white collar positions in someone else’s company.
Expanding on that point, Rich says, “Like a bad day of fishing is better than a good day at work, a bad day owning your own business can be better than working for someone else.”
If you hate your job, but you look good doing it, you might be embarrassed to walk away from it. It seems ungrateful because you have been told you are lucky to make a lot of money. People are used to you in that role and you do not want to disappoint them or be embarrassed to quit. So you “think positively and smile” and time passes, maybe promotions happen for you and you get more praise and with it, more obligation to participate in the hypocrisy of projecting joy when you feel otherwise.
Still, you despise long hours and taking orders from superiors who suck too much energy from you and can pull the proverbial trigger on your career at any time, really. You can choose the charade as a lifetime sentence and all it does is waste a life you cannot repeat (o.k. some cultures debate that, but let’s stay focused on THIS life). You get one life.
If your job sucks, do not “suck it up” for the sake of a hypocritical philosophy that insists that positive thinking cures all. It doesn’t. Your choices are the cure if you are unhappy, always. Quit and explore new ways to make a living.
Rich has seen so many current successful Minuteman Press franchise owners bridge from frustration to freedom through leaving the typical workforce and buying a printing franchise. They decided that being realistic and making a big change rather than adhering obediently to “think positively and smile” was more authentic and ultimately, the way they found happiness and success. He adds, “Owning a business can give you the flexibility in deciding what is most important to you achieving your happiness. Whether it’s the pursuit of a more comfortable living, more freedom, more recognition or more time for yourself or to give back to your community, the choice is yours when you control your own destiny.”
There is great wisdom in recognizing limitations of spirit and inclination. It helps us build relationships with those who complement our talents, styles and passions.
Kevin Wittal is the Toronto Regional Vice President for Minuteman Press International. Kevin appreciates a critical approach rather than a blanket assumption that things will forever go right if we just think positively. In fact, he is frank with potential entrepreneurs as they become serious about buying a printing franchise. As a result, he has helped many people launch just the right business to restart their careers in a way that honors their calling, not the “be positive and smile” mantra. His advice for interviewing representatives of franchise corporations is to be honest and look for the ones that have the capacity to help them way after they sign their franchise agreements.
Kevin explains, “Minuteman Press International has shown leadership to our franchise owners through research and development and education. We have kept our owners up-to-date with technological changes and assisted them to transitioning to today’s fast-paced, multi-channeled environment. We view ourselves today as marketing services providers, where we are offering our customers products and services that assist them in growing and building their businesses. From our position as mentors and allies to our franchisees, we teach our owners that their role in the business is not to work IN the business, but instead to work ON the business. This requires an ongoing commitment to marketing, getting active in clubs and organizations and keeping in close touch with their clients.”
One of thousands who made the move from the workforce as employee to the decision-maker as employer shares a perspective…
Ty Gipson analyzed his options, left the workforce and bought a Minuteman Press franchise in Georgetown, TX. He brought his sales experience and took the training and support from his franchisor that he and his wife, Crystal, know they can count upon for their entire entrepreneurial career. He reflects on what makes being a marketing services provider particularly satisfying and lucrative in his experience: “It’s being able to take something and see an end result and know it is my business is a great feeling. Maybe we can help a company get some great marketing products or design their brand from the beginning. In all cases, we help other businesses be successful. As they are successful so are we. We love to see the customers’ businesses grow as the result of our work.”
If you are not using the word “love” as Ty Gipson does to describe how he builds his success, perhaps it is time to refresh your “think positively and smile” mindset and adopt a more honest view of how you are making a living. It is far more peaceful (and likely, more lucrative) to address a reality that is failing us than it is to stick to a hopeful mantra.
Some of the best of happy endings started with the decision to quit a high paying job that is unfulfilling (but perceived as successful) in favor of taking a position of personal power through franchise ownership. This is truly fulfilling and the smiles come quite naturally, not from mantra.