By Georgie May, author of ‘Lucky Girl’

We’ve all been there. Stuck staring at a spreadsheet, yearning for an office with a sweeping city view and the title of “VP of Something Important.”

We convince ourselves that this external validation, this specific job title, is the key to unlocking professional nirvana. But what if the key to happiness at work isn’t some distant future achievement? What if it lies in shifting our perspective and finding fulfilment in the now?

Ditch the title trap

Many of us fall into the trap of tying our happiness to a specific job title. “Once I’m a director,” we think, “then I’ll be happy.” But titles are just labels. True fulfilment comes from feeling engaged and valued and having the opportunity to learn and grow. Can you identify opportunities to stretch yourself within your current role? It could be proposing a new initiative or taking on a challenging project outside your comfort zone. Perhaps it’s advocating for a mentorship programme or volunteering for a company committee that aligns with your interests. Don’t wait for the promotion to start feeling like a valuable contributor.

Celebrate the small wins

We often fall into the trap of diminishing our accomplishments. Have you achieved a critical presentation? “Just part of the job.” Solved a complex technical issue? “Anyone could have done it.” This constant downplaying erodes our sense of achievement and leaves us feeling perpetually unfulfilled. Instead, start acknowledging and celebrating your victories, big and small. Did you master a new skill in your industry? Did you receive positive feedback from a client? Did you finally conquer that pesky formatting issue that had been plaguing you for weeks? Take a moment to appreciate your progress. Share your success with a colleague, treat yourself to a coffee break, or jot down your win in a “wins” journal.

Cultivate gratitude

Taking time to appreciate the good things, even amidst the daily grind, can significantly impact your happiness. Start a gratitude journal, write down three things you’re thankful for at work each day. It could be a supportive colleague, a stimulating task, or even a decent cup of coffee in the break room with a friendly face. Gratitude rewires our brains to focus on the positive aspects of our lives, boosting our overall wellbeing and fostering a more positive outlook.

Mindfulness matters

Feeling overwhelmed and constantly chasing the next deadline is a recipe for burnout. It’s easy to get caught up in the day-to-day frenzy and lose sight of the bigger picture. Make mindfulness a priority. Take short breaks throughout the day to breathe deeply, clear your head, and refocus. Consider incorporating meditation practices into your routine. Even a few minutes of mindful breathing can significantly impact your wellbeing and work performance. When we are more present and focused, we’re better equipped to tackle tasks efficiently and avoid feeling overwhelmed.

Building a fulfilling career is a journey, not a destination

By shifting your focus to the present moment, celebrating your wins, and cultivating gratitude, you can find happiness and purpose in the work you’re doing right now. Remember, the “perfect” job might not exist, but a happy, engaged person can thrive anywhere. There’s a reason they call it a “work-life balance.” Don’t let your professional pursuits overshadow your personal wellbeing.

So, stop waiting for the magic title to unlock happiness. Start flourishing where you’re planted. Take an active role in shaping your experience. Embrace the opportunity to learn and grow, celebrate your achievements, and find gratitude in the everyday.

Your happiness is not contingent on a future promotion, it’s within your grasp right now.

About the author

Georgie May is a wellness activist and author based in Manchester. A certified practitioner of EFT tapping, yoga and reflexology, Georgie focuses on the intersection of spirituality, mental health and self-discovery, and established her business with a mission to guide others in their healing. Her new book Lucky Girl: Unveiling the Secrets of Manifesting a Lucky Life is out now (published by Capstone, £14.99).  

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