Your Career Identity: Your Wellbeing at Work

Considering that you spend most of your valuable time at work, roughly 40+ hours a week for most, your wellbeing while in the workplace is of utmost importance.
And, let’s face it, there are very few of us who jump for joy, hop out of bed, and cheer with pom poms on the commute to the office each day. Yes, it can happen, but the majority of us do not feel that way as we sip our morning coffee and think about the day ahead of us. Our work life is somewhat separate from our LIFE life. We are one person here and another person there. But is that really great for our overall wellbeing?

Most likely not.

So, what should our career identity be?

We first need to ask ourselves a few important questions:

  • How do we want to feel at work?
  • How do we want to be viewed or seen at work?
  • What do we want to accomplish at work?
  • What do we want to LEARN at work?

And finally,

  • How can we achieve the above items?

Our attitude, our work ethic, and our production help to formulate our career and work identity or persona. Rather than living two separate lives, it would be nice if our career persona coincided with our real-life persona, right?

Socially I’m fun loving, full of laughter and smiles, but at work I’m rigid, to the point, and never flex the muscles around my mouth.
That seems odd – and kind of stressful. Inconsistency truly is unhealthy.

Thus, if I like the way I feel at home and out with friends, it’s likely I aspire to feel that way at work too.

  • How do I want to feel?

The same thing goes for how I want to be seen. I want to be seen as positive and motivating, full of passion, intrigue, and intelligence. Ask yourself, 

  • How do I want to be viewed?

In terms of what I want to accomplish at my job, I want to make an impact, expand my influence, and also narrow my focus. I want to find meaning in my position.

  • What do I want to accomplish?

I am also constantly a learner. Exploring and learning new and innovative, intelligent ideas keeps me fresh, pushes the wind through my sails, and keeps me happy. Specifically, I want to learn better communication skills, how to read others more intently, and how to respond more responsibly.

  • What do I want to learn at work?

And, finally, I know exactly how I am going to achieve these things.

I’m going to put on my “real-life” hat and begin acting authentically at the office – I want my coworkers to learn about the real me. I want to engage, smile, and relate. I want to learn about them, for my wellbeing and for theirs. I want them to see me for who I really am, and vice versa. And, in order to accomplish my short-term and long-term goals, I want to dig down and learn more. I want to research, study, listen, and investigate. I want to begin utilizing and sharing new my knowledge and skillset in my everyday job to fulfill myself, but also contribute to the wellbeing of others. Sharing is caring and is beneficial to both – research shows that giving advice is actually more beneficial to the advice giver – not just the recipient. It’s’ a win-win! Listen to more about the Advice Giving Effect here.   

And, read more about this phenomenon here.

Do it for yourself. Do it for others. Develop your career identity and increase your wellbeing at work!

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