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The secret to a happy working life

By 25/10/2016Blog

Here at Baby in Mind, we work with hundreds of people every year who are contemplating a career change. Midwives, nurses, doctors, occupational therapists, social workers, physiotherapists, remedial therapists, community workers, and even engineers and architects. Despite their diverse backgrounds, most of them share in common a sense of wanting to do something more, or something completely different.

At some point, almost all of us have that one moment in our working lives where we stop and ask ourselves, are we really happy? Is this what we want to do? Have we “arrived” where we set off to reach when we started this journey? Rochelle (pictured) set out on this journey several years ago when, as a school teacher, she became aware of the number of families who needed support long before the school years. The result was a new drive to re-focus her career on working with families to build responsive relationships with their babies. Eventually this led to her training with Baby in Mind – so she could support families before problems became entrenched.

Even those of us happy in our job have occasional moments of questioning whether we are on the right path. These moments inevitably come after a day where we’ve yet again seen more tragedy, another new parent and little baby who cannot be helped with the ever-decreasing resources we have, or wondering how much more demoralisation our team can take after the latest round of funding cuts.

So often, we seek to make sense of our unhappiness at work when we are most tired and most vulnerable – the time when it is hardest to make sense of anything. So we’ve put together a list of TED-talk picks to inspire you to find your work groove again.

Whether it is time to re-look at how your approach to work, to break away and move into private practice, or to opt out for a complete career change, there’s one message all these videos have in common: Find something that makes you feel alive. A sense of contentment at work comes from doing something that gives meaning to your life…and to others.

Of course, as these talks highlight, following a dream is great in theory, but we need to also be real. There are bills to be paid. And would something remain our passion, if we had to do it day in and day out?

One of the most valuable lessons from all of these talks is that you don’t have to make a drastic change to follow your dreams or to ignite that passion. You may not need a complete career change. You may simply need a new perspective, and a few reminders of how you’re still making a difference. If your job has overtaken you, and you find yourself with less and less time to do what you set out to (support families, make a difference, care) taking a course, making time to connect with others who share similar values or simply re-injecting your day with these values can bring you back to the first day when you began, full of hope and optimism.

It’s normal for the rut and routine to lead us to take things for granted…but the one thing we take for granted the most is ourselves. We easily forget what an impact we have on other people and we all need reminding sometimes. You may not need to change your whole career – but taking just a small piece of time to do something you love ensures you nurture the sense of purpose and meaning inside.

Enjoy!

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