On a Monday morning, the alarm goes bweep bip bip bweep. Half asleep you hit the snooze and roll back beneath the blanket. Again and again bweep bip bip bweep bip…the cacophonous sound goes on and you finally give in. Sunday was a like a dream and the reality is gloomy. You dreads going to work. “Your dad is not Ambani, you need the money”, a voice screams in your head and you drag yourself out of the bed.
Days become weeks and weeks months. The feeling of dissatisfaction becomes stronger. You are not alone. Like thousands of others, you make a difference between the four-letter words WORK and PLAY.
A survey conducted by Gallup, a global performance-management company across 142 countries revealed only 13% of the workforce feels engaged with their work. For the rest, working is just a painful task they have to adhere to. Week after week if you feel your Mondays suck, it’s probably not the Monday but your job.
Choosing your career like choosing your life partner is still a family affair for most Indians. You should be an engineer because Sharmaji’s son is an engineer. And all hell breaks loose if you dare to choose something unconventional. You are forced to consider money and the scope over happiness.
Sreeju Sudhakaran, 34, writer ‘The Great Indian Wedding Conspiracy’ shares his experience,”A lot of youngsters flock to seek BPO jobs for the money but my story was different. My family wanted me to take up engineering which I resisted. The next best option I had was hotel management. The initial phase was good but after a point I felt disillusioned. I really didn’t know what I wanted. Out of sheer desperation I took up a job at a BPO. While working there I discovered that it is writing that I love.”
Whatever be the job, it is important to do what you really want. As the genius architect R. Buckminster Fuller put it, “The true business of people should be to go back to school and think about whatever it was they were thinking about before somebody came along and told them they had to earn a living.”
If you love what you do then you put your 100% and make it a success. That way money will follow and scope you will create. Isn’t it better to be a good writer than a bad, unhappy engineer? And if you choose to be an engineer then it should be for the right reasons.
As Dalan Mendonca,25, Product Manager at Instamojo puts it, “I chose engineering as a career because it teaches you to build solutions to problems. Everything from cars to computers were created because engineers decided we create something better than what is available.”
So other than loving your work what else makes for a Happy Monday? “What I like about my workplace is the collaborative culture, no hierarchy, relaxed approach towards work, no one is pressurized into doing extra and a good gender ratio”, Dalan Mendonca reveals the happy employee secret with a chuckle. He adds, “What I like the most is that we’re not top-down, people aren’t told what to do. Instead we discuss issues and together come up with solutions. Motivation comes from ownership. Wherever I have worked, I’ve felt the owner of my little area of the business rather than just another employee.”
Sociologist, Madhuri Raijada sums it up, “For some people money is all that matters. They will put in the required number of hours and not care about anything else. Others choose jobs to boost their confidence and give them a better social status. To stay motivated factors like a good work culture, an appreciating boss, growth prospects, the feeling of being a part of something productive also play an important role. Besides, many employees want to maintain a good work – life balance.”
This post was first published in Marginalia 2014-15 by SCM Sophia.