Can't bring yourself to leave the job you hate? It's called "resentism" (2023)

Have you ever felttrapped in a job you hate, but need to pay the bills?

Maybe you're in now.

With thecost of livingWhile the crisis is still severe, it's no wonder many of us would rather suffer 40 hours a week for safety's sake.

That's called resenteeism, and if you find yourselfafraid to go to worktalking a lot about work (read: complaining) in your free time, or feeling apathetic about your work but still staying in the job, you probably know that feeling.

What Causes Resentism?

According to Workplace Mental Health AdvisorPeter White, there are a variety of reasons people hate their job, from poor leadership, lack of career advancement, toxic work culture, and of course, overwork.

"Overwork has become a huge problem since Covid-19, when the lines between work and home were blurred," he tells

“People can feel like they need to keep the same pattern and pace of work, which means their workday doesn't end when the office closes. For many, it feels like work never ends because they're taking calls and answering emails in their office.'

Sirsha Haldar, Managing Director of ADP UK, a leading payroll and HR services provider, suggests sothe great resignationmay have played a role in the rise of Resenteeism.

“Many organizations also struggle to replace existing staff, either due to skill shortages or reduced staffing budgets,” she explains.

"This will undoubtedly create frustration among employees and increase the risk of resentment."

Sadie Restorick, a psychosocial risks consultant specializing in mental health hazards in the workplaceWellity Global, believes that workplace culture plays the most important role in resentism.

"When an employee describes their job as something they hate, as opposed to a slight dislike, it's usually referring to the work culture itself and behaviors that are considered toxic and unhealthy that the employee cannot change," she says us.

“We come to work to feel motivated, valued, and to experience a sense of autonomy and purpose.

“We expect to be treated with respect and fairly, and to be supported by those around us and the organization as a whole.

"If any of these variables are missing, it can quickly leave us feeling demotivated, discouraged, and feeling like our work is something that takes away from us more than it gives."

Why do people get stuck in jobs they hate?

There are numerous factors as to why someone stays in a job that makes them unhappy, the most important of which is of course financial.

"The number one reason people stay in a job they hate is simply the responsibility they feel to provide for their families and keep up finances like mortgages and bills," says Pete.

"The job market is volatile and the opportunities available can change from day to day, so it can feel safer to stick with what you know."

Add to that the fear of the unknown: What if the next job is much worse? What if the commute is longer, the culture is even more toxic, or you end up feeling even more insecure?

But alongside these – very reasonable – material reasons for staying, there are also less tangible factors that can play a role, namely a lack of trust.

"Imposter syndrome plays a big role here," says Pete.

"A lot of people don't feel good enough for the job they already are in, so the idea of ​​moving to a new place is too daunting."

Sadie adds that a toxic workplace can exacerbate those feelings.

“Low self-esteem and self-esteem are often associated with toxic work cultures. So when negative working relationships are prevalent, employees may lack the confidence to seek a new role and feel worthy of success,” she says.

"Additionally, burnout levels have increased significantly in our workforce, which equates to exhaustion, apathy and cynicism, which can make it difficult to find the energy and motivation to seek new opportunities."

How Can Resentism Affect Your Mental Health?

The problem is that despite the risks, staying in your job can affect your mental health, and not just while you're in the office.

As a psychologistdr. Samantha Madhosinghtells us: “Your mental health will be affected both in and out of the office – it may look different in both places, but it will definitely show up in both places and everywhere else.

"When someone hates their job and feels angry, hopeless and frustrated, these become symptoms of depression and possibly anxiety.

“You can feel irritable and short-tempered and this will affect your relationships at home as you may argue more with your children and others.

"You may find yourself losing interest in activities you used to enjoy, being snappy with loved ones, wanting to withdraw from friends and family and isolating yourself.

"If it goes on for too long, this intense exposure can also lead to physical health problems, since stress is at the root of so many health problems."

So you're stuck in a job you hate - what can you do about it?

"On average, we spend 3,500 days at work over the course of our lives, so don't waste them working somewhere you hate," says Pete.

"If you hate your job, something needs to change."

Below are some tips on what you can do...

Stand up for yourself

It's important to note that this doesn't have to mean stopping right away. If you feel good, why not take your concerns to your manager?

"Make a list of the pros and cons of the job and what can and can't be changed," says Samantha.

“Then identify what it would take to go and decide what you want to do.

"If there are things that can change, stand up for yourself and talk to management about how things could work better for everyone."

Joining a union is a good way to ensure you have support when it comes to standing up for your rights, particularly when it comes to pay and working conditions.

Take back control

Try to take control of the situation whenever possible, especially if your resentment stems from being overworked and undervalued.

"Check out what adjustments you can make to help," says Pete.

“Perhaps a simple lunchtime walk, getting to know colleagues or planning the day in advance (as much as possible) will help.

“Use your breaks to actually take a break.

A lot of people use their breaks to do things like deep breathing, reading, or even a little exercise session — all of which increase dopamine and endorphin levels, which improves our mood.”

What's one telltale sign you need to quit your job?Comment now

Make sure work isn't your whole life

Frustrations at work can often arise when we don't enrich our lives outside of the workplace.

"It's also important to understand that your job doesn't necessarily have to be the source of your happiness, and to be conscious about how you spend your time when you're not at work," says Samantha.

Pete agrees, saying, "Exercise, hobbies, quality time with family, and even sleep are great ways to reduce stress."

Take the plunge and quit

Finally, it is important to know that youcanstop if you want.

"When you choose to stay in the job, it's important to recognize that you're making a choice, not stuck," says Samantha.

While it's perfectly normal to worry, especially if you're worried about money.

But you can take small steps to find another job while staying in your job — it's not all or nothing.

Remember, your life is in your hands. As Pete says, "We may assume nothing will change, but if we don't do something about it, nothing will change."

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