If you recently accepted a job offer, or started at a new job, and are not feeling excited about it, you may be wondering what’s going on. A new job is a big event and most people expect to be excited when they’re starting a new position. However, you’re not feeling that way so you’re wondering if that’s normal.
To that end, this article is going to unpack whether or not you really should be excited about a new job and what it might mean if you’re not feeling that way.
Let’s dive in.
Should I Be Excited About a New Job?
In general, yes, you should be excited about a new job. A job is a big part of your life, and normal work day hours are about half of your waking time. Ideally, you would enjoy what you’re doing for work and how you’re spending that time.
Is It Normal Not To Be Excited About a New Job?
Even though you ideally should be excited about a new job, it is somewhat normal to not be excited about a new job. While I couldn’t find exact stats to help quantify the number of people that are excited versus not for a new job, I can say that 50% of workers said that they dislike their jobs. And many workers simply hate every job they get.
To that end, being that it’s common for folks to not like their jobs or their career path in general, it is normal not to be excited about a new job if it’s in a context or on a career path that most people dislike anyway.
What To Do If Not Excited About a New Job?
If you’re not excited about your new job, there are a couple of key steps that I would recommend taking:
1. Step Back and Assess Why You’re Not Excited
The first thing to do if you’re not excited about a new job is to try and get to the root cause of why you’re feeling that way. Before treating a problem, every doctor first attempts to make a proper diagnosis. In this situation of not being excited about a job, a proper diagnosis is the starting point to taking action.
In order to make that diagnosis, I would recommend using the flower exercise, which originated from the book What Color Is Your Parachute.
Basically, the book argues that there are seven different aspects to a job, which make up the “anatomy of a job” and all of them impact the likelihood that you would enjoy your work.
My recommendation is that you look at your new job and make an honest assessment of if it’s not compatible with what you want in one or more key areas of a job.
Here is what the seven pedals are:
- Pedal #1: Compatibility With People
In general, who are the people that you like to work with? Did you like the people that you interviewed with and do you think you’ll like your colleagues at the new company?
- Pedal #2: Workplace Conditions
If you could create your ideal working environment, what would it be? Would you prefer to work inside or outside? Remote or in-person? Is the traditional 8 hour day too much for you and you want more flexibility?
- Pedal #3: Skills
What are your top 10 favorite skills? Will you get to use them at your new job?
- Pedal #4: Purpose
Do you think that you will be able to wake up in the morning feeling like you have a purpose in your new role?
- Pedal #5: Knowledges
What are you interested in and knowledgeable about? Is your work aligned with that?
- Pedal #6: Money
Will you be making enough money to live the type of life that you want for yourself?
- Pedal #7: Location
Will you be living in a place that you want to live?
Once you’ve gone through that exercise, you may be able to identify some key areas where your job is incongruent with what you would ideally want out of a position. Maybe already knew that going in, and took a job that you didn’t want, but you may also be surprised at what you discover.
2. Take Action on Your Assessment
Once you have a better sense of the root cause of why you’re not excited about your root cause, it’s time for you to take action.
If one of the reasons that your not excited is something that’s easy to fix, such as wanting to work remote, wanting a different schedule to be able to spend more time with your family, then you may be able to negotiate something like that before you start to make the situation better for yourself.
If you ultimately find that the reason that you’re not excited is something that’s more fundamental, such as realizing that you don’t like the people, then you might need to reconsider if making the move makes sense and seeing if you can stay at your existing position.
Lastly, if you find that you’re not excited for reasons that can’t be fixed really by any traditional job, you may need to start dreaming bigger and trying to build a work life and income stream that goes beyond the traditional corporate world.
To do that, I find going through the steps in our what to do with life article helps folks understand what they truly want and start to put together an action plan to pursue that longer term.
A new job is a big life change. And when you make a change like that, you would ideally feel excited about it.
If you don’t, it’s important to take a step back to try and understand the root cause of why you’re not excited about your new job and then take appropriate action from there.