Finding happiness at work

  • 14 Dec 2017

Before she joined T+O+M, our business manager, Nicola Davidson, had a high-powered career as an investment banker.

After having the courage to ask herself the hard questions, Nicola decided the toll it was taking on her happiness and her health were not worth the salary packet, so she made the admirable decision to take a leap of faith without knowing what she would do next.

Nicola took a sabbatical and spent time in Europe as an adventure swim guide, before finding her way to us (and for that we are beyond grateful)

Nicola was interviewed about her experience for the 'Meaning of Work' podcast which you can listen to here

In the interview, Nicola talks about dealing with the effects of job stress and anxiety, what to do when you don't enjoy your job but you haven't found your passion, how she dealt with the loss of prestige, and how to identify with your true self, without the job title.  

So, has Nicola managed to find happiness at work in the two and a half years since she did the interview?

Here, she shares her reflections... 

"I feel lucky to report that I have found happiness at work. It’s not in the forms that I would have expected when I started my career in banking, that is the prestige of a senior job title and a big pay cheque. In fact, I still miss those things occasionally, which is not intended as a hint to current management about my IC!," she says. 

"The fact is, whilst I’m not paid an investment banking salary, I do feel I’m paid fairly for what I do and I certainly wouldn’t swap being paid more for an increase in stress and responsibility. Instead, I am happy working in an environment where I learn at work every day, laugh at work every day, where I have the autonomy to decide what I do in my role but also the support to ask for help and guidance when I need it, and to leave the office at a reasonable time every evening knowing that I won’t be worrying about work overnight.

"Similar to previous roles, I am motivated by the knowledge that what I do, in a small way, adds value to my organisation and the people with whom I work and therefore what I do is, on the whole (apart from the nagging), appreciated by my colleagues. But more than this, it’s that I believe in what I am doing again.

"I am in the right job for me, for where I am in my life right now. And I know that at the point, if it comes, that it is no longer fulfilling, that I will recognise it and be able to look for the next thing that will be the right thing for me at that moment in time too. I’m certainly not looking to change anytime soon, though!"


The 'Meaning of Work' podcast is produced by Rise Inspire.  

Rise Inspire aims to inspire people and give them the confidence to find happiness and meaning at work. The organisation is driven by the belief that people can affect their own happiness when they are brave enough to make a change, and when happiness and meaning at work are at the center of what we do, success follows. It enhances people's lives in every possible way, from work performance, creativity and energy to better health, relationships and even living longer (another 7 years, according to Harvard's 75 year study on happiness). 

You can find more information on Rise Inspire here: www.riseinpire.com.au 




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