Separate Happy Work From Work-y Work

March 9, 2023
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No matter how much you might love your job, there will always be tasks you like doing more than others. Perhaps you love creative brainstorms but hate doing your timesheets? Or maybe you get email anxiety but adore the time you get to do what you do best, whether that’s writing, coding, creating, or building relationships? 

There’s no avoiding your less-than-favourite tasks but, according to experts, there is a certain way you should be tackling them. 

Cassie Holmes, professor of marketing and behavioural decision-making at UCLA and author of the book Happier Hour, suggests that we should be splitting our workloads into two categories: ‘happy work’ and ‘work-y work’. 

As you might expect, happy work is the stuff that brings us joy. The tasks we actively look forward to and are - most likely - the reason we got into the profession. Work-y work is the stuff that you enjoy less but is part of the package. You can’t just not do it. 

Some tasks will fall easily into each category, but some will require a bit more introspection. Ask yourself, how do I feel when I do this task? Does it lift my spirits or deplete them? Is this a passion or a chore? Once you’ve successfully sussed out which category your workload falls into, it’s time to get segmenting. 

Cassie Holmes says that these two categories should be separated throughout the working day so that they never bleed into one another. That way, when you’re focusing on your happy work, you needn’t be swept into the worky-work. And vice versa. By allocating time for each, you still retain that balance where you can wholeheartedly throw yourself into the stuff you love. 

For those of us who are guilty of procrastinating, the segmentation of these times also ensures you don’t simply put off the stuff you don’t like doing. The key is to create a healthy balance in your schedule so that you are never suddenly faced with a solid wall of work-y work that becomes overwhelming or makes you feel like this is all your job is. 

At the end of the day, your career should not be a chore. This is also a good exercise in working out whether or not you truly enjoy your job! If, after all your introspection and categorising, you’ve found that, actually, most of what you do is unenjoyable, perhaps it’s time to think about what you might do instead to bring a little passion and excitement into your work life! Or, if you’re not ready to switch things up completely, have a think about the kinds of tasks that would bring you some joy, and go about asking for more roles and responsibilities in this area. Our last newsletter was also about the new trend of quiet hiring. Well, why not use this trend to your advantage to get a better role within the same company? 

At Remotify, we’re all about how to make your career or business work for you, not the other way around. Get in touch with a member of our friendly team today to see what we can do for you! 

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