Being in the business of coaching people to stop doing things they hate and move their lives in alignment with their deeper wisdom, I still get gobsmacked by the power of seeing those words strung together. A client recently told me that once she stopped doing things she hates, her life changed dramatically. It led to a release of commitments and work that no longer served her as well as a cross-country move to be closer to family. And she now evangelizes the idea to everyone she meets.
There is an infinite number of things you can be doing on this life journey that don’t include things you hate. Hate is the operative word here. I know few people who can avoid annoying or mundane tasks, and few who are privileged enough to have the freedom to walk away from something they just aren’t in the mood for. But hate is another level. And while justifications abound, there is a better option than getting up in the morning to immerse yourself in work you hate doing.
Psychologist Dr. John Sklare calls hate a destructive state of mind that wreaks havoc with physical health and emotional well-being. He says it carries a “mental venom that can pollute your spirit, poison your soul, and seep into all of the relationships that surround you.” You’re hurting more than just yourself by continuing activities you detest because of the energetic field it creates around you and those with whom you come in contact.
Listen to your inner voice
Internal narratives in support of doing, accepting, or continuing with work you hate might include:
“Everyone has to do things they hate.” This is an indoctrinated belief for many. But what if it’s wrong? While life can present challenges and demand things we don’t ask for, doing something you hate because you believe it’s just the way things are is a myopic view that serves nothing and no one.
“I’ll be homeless if I don’t.” Is that really true? I’d wager there are several steps (and missteps) between stopping doing work you hate and homelessness.
“I don’t want to let people down.” This might be one of the hardest ones to counter—particularly if you’re a people pleaser. Telling people what they want to hear in the moment is often easier than temporarily disappointing them. But when the moment of not letting someone down passes, you’ll often find yourself holding the bag of something you don’t want.
Subscribe here to find out four other common things your inner voice says to keep you doing work you hate and the two baby steps you can take to start doing work you love.
Kristin Brownstone is a certified professional coach.