Entanglements… at Work?

You have the power to love your career without quitting your role. If you want to be happier at work, here's what you can do to avoid a "bad job for life."

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Will and Jada Pinkett Smith attend a red carpet event for a movie premiere

You’ve probably heard the news that while Jada Pinkett Smith and Will Smith were separated, Jada had what she referred to as an “entanglement” with singer August Alsina.

I’m normally not a proponent of gossip, but the overwhelming buzz about this incident got me thinking about how I could adopt entanglements in my own work. But wait…

Image Credit: Kathy Hutchins / Shutterstock.com

WHAT is an entanglement?? And how does it have anything to do with my career?

(Don’t worry, I’m not advocating having an illicit relationship with your coworkers!!)

An entanglement just means something that you’re wrapped up in, in this case outside of your usual activities.

Perhaps your job is feeling a little stuck? Routine? You’re not feeling much growth or fulfillment. It’s not as exciting as it once was. It’s missing something. You want more.

Image Credit: JESHOOTS.com on Unsplash

Sounds kind of like a stalled relationship, huh?

If you’re looking to uplevel, but not necessarily completely walk out on, your job right now – here’s a tip. You can use a powerful tool called “job crafting” to spice up your role. Harvard Business Review defines job crafting as “redefining your job to incorporate your motives, strengths, and passions.”

Image Credit: You X Ventures on Unsplash

So how do you pursue job crafting in your workplace? It’s simple. Look around and see what looks interesting to you in your office. Explore. And connect! Here’s how:

​1. Think about the specific activities that you really enjoy and that you are skilled at doing.

For example, you’ve got a job as a software engineer, but you are naturally extroverted and you enjoy talking to others. If you are looking for more human connection, you may benefit from leading team discussions on . What about tackling some program management tasks? With this modification, you can connect with others on your team or in leadership, and spend some time away from coding.

2. Consider where you feel something is lacking in your role and how you can fill that gap with what is aligned with your values.

​You’re living the high-paced consulting life, feeling successful and accomplished. However, you want to take time to give back to the community. Can you volunteer to assist the corporate social responsibility team? This way, you can light up your passion and connect to a deeper purpose.

​3. Tap into the things that you’ve always wanted to learn.

You manage the company’s finances but have always wanted to flex your creative muscle. You could ask to sit in on some of the marketing meetings, or shadow a graphic designer to learn a new tool.

Image Credit: Unsplash

If you are not 100% satisfied and fulfilled with you job right now, and you aren’t quite ready to quit, think about what would make your job more enjoyable. Are there some tweaks you could make in your job description to fill in those gaps?

What are you going to get entangled with at work?

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