Ditch the Grind: Embrace “Spiritual Resignation” and Reclaim Your Midlife Joy

Entering middle age, many people feel that they can no longer love their work.

Early in the morning, I hurriedly finished breakfast and rushed to the company. I was stuck in traffic on the commute and was very anxious;

In the afternoon, I finally made it to get off work time. The boss’s project meeting started as soon as possible, and getting off work on time became elusive;

On the weekend, I wanted to take a break to have dinner and chat with friends, but the messages in my work group kept ringing, and clients sent me work messages…

In the Internet age, the distance between working days and holidays has begun to become blurred, and the boundaries between work and life are no longer clear-cut. Everyone’s workplace pressure is increasing.

But many times, what consumes you is not the work itself, but your mentality towards the work.

If you are often consumed by work, you might as well try to get along with work in a different way.

Work with a resignation mentality and your work will go smoothly.

In a certain talk show, a contestant made an impressive complaint:

Since the Industrial Revolution, the most mainstream way for humans to make money is to go to work.

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Many people hope that they will be rewarded for their hard work at work.

But the fact is that under the pressure of involution, fewer and fewer people get happiness and fulfillment from their work.

Xiao Wang has worked in a large factory for many years and is very serious about his work. The projects he is responsible for are difficult, the manpower is small, and it is easy to make mistakes.

After working for two years, the company’s organizational structure was suddenly adjusted. His original leader was transferred and had to report to another leader.

This new leader was not familiar with the business, but he spoke and acted very forcefully. Xiao Wang would be severely criticized almost every time he communicated with him.

Xiao Wang had worked hard to prepare his promotion defense for a long time, but he also got stuck in the hands of this leader.

The devastated Xiao Wang felt like going to work every day was like a punishment, and he couldn’t understand the meaning of his hard work every day.

The imbalance between effort and reward at work makes many people feel physically and mentally exhausted in the workplace and feel that there is no hope.

I want to escape from the workplace, but when I think about the mortgage, car loan, and the whole family, I still get up and go to work the next day;

If you want to achieve success at work, you will get too little positive feedback, and the number of things that will hinder you will increase day by day.

Internal friction at work will not only accelerate the consumption of our energy and enthusiasm, but also hinder our personal growth.

When we lose our fighting spirit at work, things that were once easy to do well become extremely difficult.

As Dale Carnegie said in “Human Weakness”:

“Our fatigue is often not due to the work itself, but to worry, tension and unhappiness.”

In order to escape the pain caused by work, some people numb themselves through tobacco and alcohol, and some people work hard at work, but obviously, it doesn’t help.

As a result, more and more migrant workers are trying to get rid of the internal friction in the workplace and find new ways out for themselves.

Feng Tang once said:

“No matter what the job is, if we can approach it with a resignation mentality, then the job will become much easier.”

Many times, when you work too hard, it becomes difficult to achieve the goals you want to achieve.

When you face work with a resignation mentality, many problems encountered at work will be easily solved.

A Xiaohongshu blogger once shared his work experience in a video.

During the three years of masks, her company did not need to commute back and forth most of the time.

At the same time, the company has more and more online meetings, and the work tasks assigned by leaders are becoming more and more heavy.

At that time, she was working from morning to night and almost had no life of her own. She became increasingly anxious and internally consumed:

If you make a small mistake at work, you will feel like you are useless;

A casual suggestion from the leader would cause her to repeatedly beat herself up late at night;

I usually don’t eat well and sleep well, and every time I wash my hair, I lose a big clump of hair…

The internal friction at work made her feel physically and mentally exhausted, and one day she finally made up her mind to change everything.

Later in her career, she began to try “spiritual resignation.”

When she goes to work, she will still handle her work seriously, be emotionally stable and act quickly.

After get off work, she disappeared without a trace and learned several sports in her spare time.

Since then, she has become more productive and, more importantly, in a better mood.

After some time, the company promoted her to director and said she had “leadership qualities.”

In this way, “spiritual resignation” not only helped her free herself from extreme boredom at work, but also helped her gain more confidence and sense of accomplishment from her work.

When many people are working, once external feedback and work results do not achieve the results they want, they will easily fall into internal friction.

But from the perspective of the company owner, the essence of part-time work is just a transaction.

What the company wants is the results of your work. Only you care about how much emotional labor you put into it.

People live forever, so why worry about gains and losses and be distracted by work.

In the past two years, a very interesting phenomenon occurred in European and American social media.

More and more young people in Europe and America are sharing “Quiet Quitting” on social media .

This word can be translated as: “Quietly quitting/resigning”, or it can also be understood as “spiritual resignation”.

It means that “workers work according to the minimum requirements and do not invest more time, energy or enthusiasm than absolutely necessary”, and the work mentality of “doing as much as you get, no overtime and no involution”.

Faced with midlife crisis and workplace burnout, more and more migrant workers are beginning to “mentally quit their jobs.”

They will still complete their work efficiently, but they will no longer be as emotionally invested in their work as in the past.

They are unwilling to work overtime day and night, and they no longer work hard to reach the illusory pie drawn by their boss.

Instead, they care more about the quality of their lives outside of their 8-hour workday.

1) Give up excessive sense of responsibility

There was a question on Zhihu: “How to fight anxiety?”

One upvoted answer was: “Let go of things you shouldn’t do.”

Being responsible for work is an excellent quality, but being overly responsible for work often brings a huge burden to oneself.

One of my former colleagues in the marketing department has good working ability and is also friendly and enthusiastic.

Everyone usually comes to him when making copies or picking up couriers. When the annual meeting is short of a host, they still come to him. When they encounter difficulties in planning, they still come to him.

So he often used his working time to help others complete trivial tasks, without any credit to himself. Instead, he left behind his own work.

So much so that his department boss has always been dissatisfied with him because he felt he couldn’t handle it well.

Many people in the workplace actually fall into a misunderstanding. They think that having good popularity in the workplace will be more conducive to their work, so they don’t know how to say no.

But in fact, completing one’s own job efficiently is the most powerful competitiveness of a wage earner.

When a colleague assigns you some tasks beyond your job responsibilities, you can weigh two things in your mind –

Will taking on these jobs affect my own job and whether it can improve my core professional abilities?

If both conditions are not met, it is better to learn to evade cleverly.

2) Correct your mentality and lower your self-esteem

At work, we habitually value ourselves with reference to “external evaluations” and “work results.”

But in fact, we should add a very important dimension to our self-valuation – self-growth.

Because it is difficult for a person to retire in a unit or company, but the abilities, experience and mentality you have accumulated at work cannot be taken away by others.

Smart workers know how to distinguish between high-value work and low-value work, and find ways to minimize the time spent on low-value work. Their growth rate at work will also be greatly increased.

When you learn to focus on yourself and lower your expectations for people and things at work, everything you encounter will be pleasantly surprised.

3) Selectively ignore other people’s evaluations

Workplace blogger Cui Can once said:

The most painful thing about going to work is not that you are physically tired, but that you are mentally tired. Because you have put in a lot of invisible and intangible emotional labor.

We often have a lot of expectations for work, expecting leaders to be understanding and colleagues to be friendly.

However, no matter which company you work for, you will inevitably encounter people and things that make you feel upset.

Whether it’s dressing up to work for someone you don’t like, or pretending to be friendly to a boss or colleague you don’t like, it will consume our psychological energy.

When too much psychological energy is consumed, we are prone to workplace burnout.

As netizens said: Just go to work, don’t get involved.

Every job is just an encounter between you and the world.

More important than winning or losing is that you can enjoy the process of fighting.

For the parts of work that you don’t like, just emotionally isolate them, don’t get entangled, don’t get internal, and let them go when you’re done.

Only by leaving more efficiency to work can you leave a better mood to life.

Goethe said in “Letters”:

“If work is a pleasure, life is heaven. If work is a duty, life is hell.”

When you have nothing else in life but work, at the end of the day you realize you never really lived.

When you regard work as a means to achieve a better life, work will become easier.

Going to work with a resignation mentality does not mean lying down at work.

Instead, we use “spiritual resignation” to get rid of the consumption of work on ourselves, so that we can better cope with the hardships and challenges at work.

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