Career Advice

7 Helpful Tips on How to Not Dread Going to Work

Do you dread Mondays? Maybe you dread hearing your alarm go off in the morning. Or, maybe every night before you sleep, you have heavy feelings of dread in your chest. 

The cause? Work. If you feel this way, then you’re part of the 87% of employees who feel a sense of dread at work at least once a month. Only this time, “I dread going to work every day”

Work dread is not pleasant. It can affect your whole life. This is why I’m going to give you 7 tips on how to not dread going to work.

With this, you’ll be able to find reasonable ways to stop dreading and start enjoying. It’ll make work and life so much better. So let’s get to it!

Read More: “I Hate My Job So Much It Gives Me Anxiety” – 10 Actions to Consider

Why Do I Dread Going to Work When I Like My Job

Before I get into the tips, I first want to answer one common question, “Why do I dread going to work when I like my job?” Sure, if you hate your job, it’s easy to know why you dread work. 

But what if there’s nothing to hate about it? Your boss and colleagues are OK. Your salary is good. Your workload is not too extreme. In fact, you like your job. 

Well, according to the Recruitment Partners Inc. team:

Feeling dread when going to work can make the entire day feel like a waste, even if nothing particularly bad actually happens. It’s a negative self-talk where you expect to have an unfavorable experience, so you do.

With that in mind, allow me to give you some reasons why you may find yourself dreading work despite no real cause…

  • You feel stuck. Yes, you can like your job, but that doesn’t mean you’re satisfied. If you’re someone who has big aspirations and goals, it’s easy to feel trapped in a career that doesn’t offer that. Who wouldn’t dread entering their cage? 
  • You’re just plain bored. Boredom can turn to dread. If you find yourself doing the same thing over and over again, you’ll start to have Sunday night blues. You won’t want the weekend to end as you don’t want to go back to the cycle. 
  • You feel that something terrible will happen. Sometimes, dread is just a mindset. As you commute to work, you’ll be thinking about work gossip or bad behavior, even if that never happened before. It may be time for that terrible thing that you predicted to happen. 
  • You feel powerless. Maybe the work environment isn’t toxic, but you still feel that you have no say about anything. You feel powerless and helpless and useless. All these feelings produce dread of going to work every day. 
  • You have anxiety. If you’re a naturally anxious person, it’s hard to stop dreading work. There may not be a good reason, but you can’t control the racing of your anxious mind. For you, it’s normal to dread work. 

Of course, this is not an exhaustive list. Also, you can experience dread because of negative aspects, like toxic coworkers or bosses, work overload, and such. Either way, let’s look at some strategies to help combat feelings of dread. 

7 Ways to Stop Dreading Work 

Here are the 7 tips on how to not dread going to work:

  1. Identify the root cause
  2. Find areas that you can change
  3. Accept things you cannot change
  4. Find the positives in work and focus on them
  5. Set small goals for yourself
  6. Take real breaks on your day off
  7. Find a new job 

1. Identify the root cause

The first strategy on how to not dread going to work is to find the root cause. Ask yourself, “Why do I dread going to work every day?” Once you find the root cause, it’ll be easier to fix it. 

So go ahead and evaluate your feelings. List down things you’re struggling with. Is it boredom? Anxiety? Toxic behavior? Too much work? Taking the time to check yourself will go a long way to help yourself. 

2. Find areas that you can change

When you identify the problem, try to find areas you can change to make it better. For example, let’s say you dread commuting to work. To counter that, you can ask HR if there’s a chance do to remote work a few times a month. 

What if you’re overworked? Well, talk to your boss about the workload. Be honest about your feelings and how all the work is burning you out. 

The great news is that many employers want to keep their workers happy. This is because a study by Gallup showed that happy employees are 18% more productive and 23% more profitable than unhappy employees. So if you’re open about these things, you can make the change you need to stop dreading. 

3. Accept things you cannot change

If you’re wondering, “Is it normal to dread going to work everyday?” Yes, it is. And sometimes all you need to help ease it is to accept this fact. You’re not alone. 

Moreover, it’s important to accept that there are things you can’t change. Let’s say your root cause is internal and that’s just the way you are. Don’t beat yourself about it. 

Instead, accept who you are. Of course, you should also find ways to be more positive. Here’s what the team at Recruitment Partner Inc. says:

Mindfulness exercises, positive self-talk, and other techniques are all great ways to work on accepting what cannot change. If you have the ability, seeking help from a professional is a fantastic way to learn techniques to improve your mental health!

4. Find the positives in work and focus on them

Work is dreadful. The tasks are dreadful. The people are dreadful. The workspace is dreadful. This kind of mindset will make the thought of work all negative. 

If you feel this way, then look for aspects of your job that are positive. Maybe there’s one coworker that you get along with. Maybe you like what the company stands for or the company culture. 

If you look, you’re sure to find some positives. And when you focus on those positives, the feeling of dread won’t be so prominent. 

5. Set small goals for yourself

Part of dread is feeling overwhelmed. There’s always so much to do in so little time. If this is you, you can fix the problem by setting small goals. 

Setting manageable goals each day or week will allow you to accomplish them. In turn, this will help you improve your work, become more productive, and gain a sense of control. 

One great example of this is to tell yourself that you’ll complete 3 tasks on your to-do list before lunchtime. When you do that, you’ll feel very accomplished. Pretty soon, you might even start to feel happy at work again. 

6. Take real breaks on your day off

Want to know why you dread the work week? It could be because you have an unhealthy work-life balance.

Even during the weekends, or anytime you’re outside of work, you still check your emails. You stress about that upcoming project. You find yourself thinking about work behavior that you hate. 

Stop that. Instead, on your day off, drop everything work-related. Find a new hobby. Hang out with your family and friends. Go out for a long walk with your dog. You can even lie down all day binge-watching your favorite Netflix show. 

This will allow you to recharge. Work won’t feel so much like a burden if you have something to look forward to. 

7. Find a new job

Let’s say after trying all the tips and strategies, you still dread going to work. Well, maybe it’s time you made a career change. In this case, spend some time to find a job. 

But don’t be drastic about it. You first need to consider if it’s really time to quit. If so, I suggest that you find a job first before quitting. While looking, you can try the other 6 tips to make work more bearable. 

Also, it’s important to find a job that will allow you to enjoy going to work. You don’t want another job that will produce the same results of dread. You want it to be worth it in the long run. 

Final Words

If dread becomes your dominant thought about work, know that you’re not alone. This is a common feeling in the workplace. 

However, don’t just bear it and work it daily. It’s important to find ways to remove or lessen that negative feeling. This is why you should follow the 6 helpful tips on how to not dread going to work. 

It might not remove all the dread, but it will make it easier to face the workday. And if nothing works, then it’s time to follow tip #7 – find a new company and job that you’ll enjoy and not dread. 

About Author

Founder of With over 20 years of experience in HR and various roles in corporate world, Jenny shares tips and advice to help professionals advance in their careers. Her blog is a go-to resource for anyone looking to improve their skills, land their dream job, or make a career change.

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