Study after study tells us that over 50% of Americans dislike or are even disengaged from their jobs. Perhaps you’ve come to this website because you are one of those people.
Maybe your current job no longer challenges you, or you’ve realized you’ve been on the wrong career path for your interests and talents. Or maybe you’re under-employed or unemployed and you’re looking for something that will use your full potential.
The knock-on effect of job dissatisfaction can be huge – stress related illness, high absenteeism, low morale, and on and on. You may be experiencing some of those effects. And your kids are watching.
What if the children you love grow up to work in jobs they hate? What if they end up dreading Mondays, celebrating Hump Day, and announcing with relief, “T.G.I.F.”? Can those dismal studies and statistics on job dissatisfaction be changed for the next generation?
Fortunately, the answer is yes.
1. Make it clear to your kids that you’re on a path to career success
We all make mistakes, and in an age appropriate way, make sure your children understand how you’re working to improve your career situation. When our children see us strive for something better, it makes them proud to be a part of the family, and it provides them a great example of persistence and resiliency.
2. Try to leave work problems at work
Use your commute to defuse and de-stress so your career dissatisfaction doesn’t come home with you. Instead, bring home the positives. If you received an encouraging note or a positive review of something you worked on, post it on the refrigerator among the report cards, quizzes, and art of your children.
Doing so can help them view work as a responsibility and an opportunity to contribute their talents to a greater good. As a result, they’ll go into their careers with a better attitude.
3. Finally, keep track of your children’s strengths, talents, interests, and achievements
By age six, they’re usually anxious to show off what they’re good at, and it’s during these elementary school years that we can see their true areas of giftedness.
But by adolescence, they’ll start being pulled by peer pressure, societal expectations, and school grading measurements that imply what they’re good at, and theoretically, what they’re not so good at. These pressures and expectations will start to drown out their memories of what they loved to do when they were younger.
With your perspective, you can clearly see the true skills and interests of your kids, and you can understand how much better it would be to apply those skills and interests in their day-to-day work as adults.
Recording interests and strengths from those earlier years will provide excellent material when it’s time to choose vocations or college majors. The result? Better career decisions for a more fulfilling job and life.
Encourage discussion when your children share dreams of their future, and share some of the career lessons you’ve learned as appropriate.
As they grow older, be sure to point out what you’ve seen over the years—their desires, their talents, their achievements, and the positive attributes they bring to the world. Your insight can help propel them into a career that’s a perfect match.