Dread Going To Work

Dread Going To Work? How To Deal With The Feeling


You dread going to work. Every morning is the same, you drag yourself out of bed. It’s not that the body is weak but the mind is not willing. Most of us know that. If not for a long period of time, at least at some point in our career we would have felt that way.

Is there a way of overcoming the dread of going to work everyday? I am not sure if I have the absolute solution, but these are some of the strategies I have personally tried in my years of experience.

1. Dominant Thoughts

To start with, do not let the “dread going to work” syndrome become your dominant thought. Yes, I know it is easier said than done. But you have to start somewhere and that somewhere is your thought. Whether you call it “law of attraction” or any other term to describe it. The more you think about dreading your work, the deeper it will dwell into your thought. Stop thinking about it. Take that thought out and focus your thought on something else.

2. Locate The Source Of Your Dread

What is the source of your “dread going to work” feeling? Start by doing something about it. Find out the source of your dread, or you will not be able to tackle it. Do not complain if you do not know what you are complaining about.

Why do you dread going to work? Is it because of your colleagues, your boss, your routine work, your pay, or the traffic? Write them down and see if you can tackle them. I am sure resignation has crossed your mind. But before you do that, let’s see if there is a way of solving it. We cannot expect life to be perfect and work to be perfect for that matter.

3. Seek Not Perfection

Life is not perfect. Why should work be? Accept that things being imperfect are how things work. If you expect perfect colleagues, perfect bosses, perfect resources, perfect processes then you are in for a shock. There can never be a perfect system, perfect factory, and perfect office wherever you work.

Because, trust me, no matter how high your pay is it can always be higher, no matter how good your colleagues are, they can always be better, no matter how understanding your boss is, he can always be better. Seek not perfection if you do not want to dread going to work. Seek adaptation, adaptation from yourself. What can you do to make the work environment better?

4. Think Of Work As A Pedagogue

Ever think that the process of work can also teach us something about life? Think of work as a pedagogue. It teaches us that we do not always have things our way and life can sometimes mean having to do things we do not like, or even enjoy. But it’s only temporary and we have a choice of doing something about it.

Use this experience of dreading to go to work as your teacher. What does it teach you? Ask and answer, and you will immediately see this experience of dread going to work in a different light.

There is something you can do about the feeling of “dread going to work.” Do not fear it. Sit down calmly and have an action plan to tackle it. When you start working on a plan to diffuse it, you will feel better already even if the plan to stop the feeling of “dread going to work” does not work.

Photo Credit: Shutterstock

Yun Siang Long

Yun Siang Long, or Long as he is popularly known, spent 16 years in three multinational ad agencies where he also trained people in areas of career management.


  1. Thanks for the post. im also goin through this. I think this is good advice because this IS the way life is. just a pitty…. cant help but dream about robot slaves freeing us all……sigh…

  2. Thanks for this post. I’m going through this right now. I love my co-workers, my boss and the work but it’s a really fast-paced environment and I can’t keep up. It’s not something that can be changed and its gotten to the point that I feel I need to resign. Anyway, it’s good to have some knowledge on how to fix the things that are within my control.

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