Why Do You Work? A Question to Ask When You Feel Unappreciated on the Job.

why do you workI once worked at a place where I felt very unappreciated. In fact, the majority of my coworkers felt unappreciated. That place had a culture of unappreciation.

It was miserable. We were all miserable.

I have a lot of friends in similar situations. It’s not that they don’t like what they do, it’s that they don’t like the way that people treat them. Sometimes, they base their feelings on flawed logic but other times, their employers and coworkers simply aren’t treating them well.

Now that I’m a consultant and run my own business, I rarely feel unappreciated and undervalued. My clients are amazing. I value them, they value me. I build client relationships on honesty and reciprocity.

Every once in a while though, something happens that makes me feel less than stellar. I’ve never had a client intentionally make me feel this way, but hey, sometimes it just happens. And when you feel undervalued it’s so easy to say “I don’t want to work today. I want to eat ice cream and drink wine and stay in bed with a good book and that’s it.”

When this happens to me or to my friends, I ask one question:

Why do you work?

I don’t want answers like “because I have to” or “to make money.” I’m looking for more esoteric answers here (I’m always looking for more esoteric answers).

I work because I love to write. I work because I love to help people pull their thoughts out of their head in a way that is relatable to the masses. I work because I love helping people connect.

If I were to stop doing what I love because someone else didn’t appreciate my work, I’d be denying myself.

Don’t work to be appreciated. Work to live up to your potential. Don’t worry about whether or not someone else recognizes it. Work because you love it.

Work for yourself. Don’t worry about anyone else.

Image credit: Freedigitalphotos.net



  1. I’m guessing that, “I work so I can eat chocolate ice cream” is probably not going to be esoteric enough. Which makes me think, maybe I should not work at all. Because all I want to do is eat chocolate ice cream. Without chocolate ice cream there is no reason to live. And that’s why I work. So if I don’t work, how can I live? Wait, that just got esoteric, didn’t it?!?!

    I so totally love the way you think!

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