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DR MAX PEMBERTON: Hate your job? ‘Quiet quitting’ is NOT the answer

How do you feel about your job? Overworked and undervalued? If so, you might be tempted to join the legion of workers who have started to ‘quiet quit’.

It’s a new trend where people who hate their job, or feel undervalued at work, are doing the bare minimum to not get fired — and absolutely nothing more. They need the money, so they don’t want to be fired, but they have no interest in their job – and it doesn’t matter who knows.

The trend has spread on social media, but was inspired by China’s TangPing or ‘lay flat’ movement, which encouraged workers to mentally step out of their jobs and do no more than was strictly necessary.

Motivated by the country’s shrinking workforce and the culture of very long hours, it was considered such a threat to the economy that it has now been censored by authorities.

The trend has spread on social media, but was inspired by the Chinese TangPing movement or 'lay flat' movement, which encouraged workers to mentally step out of their jobs and do no more than was strictly necessary.

The trend has spread on social media, but was inspired by the Chinese TangPing movement or ‘lay flat’ movement, which encouraged workers to mentally step out of their jobs and do no more than was strictly necessary.

It is very likely that it will have a strong following here too, after shocking research has shown that only 9 per cent of Britons are ‘engaged’ in our work.

The phenomenon clearly has its roots in the lockdown when many people working from home found that they could do far fewer hours – and less work – than in the office and still be able to come by without a P45 landing on their doorstep.

The pandemic also caused some to reassess their priorities and ask big, investigative questions about what they really wanted from life. They have mentally quit their jobs and now feel encouraged not to pretend otherwise.

For example, a few years ago, if an employee had received an email from their boss asking them to do something late on a Friday afternoon, they probably would have been left behind to get it done and perhaps canceled or rearranged their plans. Now the trend is for people to push back and say they will do it Monday when they can.

It’s a step beyond the practice of “work to rule,” where employees do exactly what they’re hired to do and nothing more, often as a form of union action to show how much overtime workers actually work and how dependent a company is on this unpaid work.

Quiet stop continues. It’s passive-aggressive pushing the boundaries to see how little you can do without getting fired.

It sounds very empowering – you don’t have to suck at your boss or do more than you’re paid to stand out from your peers and get promoted.

dr.  Max Pemberton says finding the positives in your job can help you get involved.  He discusses 'quiet quitting', with staff doing the bare minimum at jobs

dr. Max Pemberton says finding the positives in your job can help you get involved. He discusses ‘quiet quitting’, with staff doing the bare minimum at jobs

There’s no doubt that working in a job you don’t like will have a negative impact on your mental health. But ‘quiet quitting’ can itself be the cause of poor job satisfaction.

Doing something you think you hate, but doing nothing to change things — instead setting up a silent protest this way — is a surefire way to feel miserable. You become less involved, less enthusiastic, first in the task and later in other areas of your life.

You stop trying to find meaning and purpose in what you do – stop trying to see the good in your work, or consider the value of work for the sake of profitable mental engagement – and instead you become an embittered automaton.

How is that liberating?

I remember working in a nursing home in my early twenties and hating every moment of it.

I was treated badly by management and we were so overworked that we never had time to provide proper care. I dreaded every second of work and started calling the place a “hell”. I hated it so much.

What struck me was the more I complained and decided I hated it, the worse I felt. I needed the money to study medicine, so I knew I was stuck there.

Finally, it dawned on me that my relentless negative attitude toward my work was one of the reasons I hated it so much.

I reasoned that there were things I couldn’t change, but in the end I was still helping people and getting paid for it.

The residents were interesting and although there was pressure from management to push through, I was still able to find the time to chat with the people I cared for.

I decided to focus on the positive aspects of the job, rather than keep telling myself I hated every second of waking up. I changed my attitude towards work – and this in turn helped me change my feelings about it.

It was also helpful in another way.

In a later job I didn’t like it. I tried the same tactic and just couldn’t find anything positive about it – so I knew I had done my best, and instead of feeling miserable and bored, I gave my notice with no regrets.

I wonder if the legion of silent quitters shouldn’t be doing the same thing: try and find the positive in a job.

If it doesn’t work out after all your efforts, you know it’s time to say goodbye – your boss will probably thank you for it.

WHi double default on hair dye?

While a screen idol like George Clooney has been dubbed a 'silver fox' for letting their gray hair grow out, women are accused of making no effort and succumbing to aging if they don't reach for the dye

While a screen idol like George Clooney has been dubbed a ‘silver fox’ for letting their gray hair grow out, women are accused of making no effort and succumbing to aging if they don’t reach for the dye

Liam Gallagher posted a selfie on Instagram last week with new blonde locks. All hell broke loose.

The rocker Oasis was widely ridiculed because people thought he dyed his hair.

He said it was basically just the sun – but why is there such a double standard with men dyeing their hair compared to women?

It seems ridiculous that men in today’s world still can’t change their hair color without attracting scorn and ridicule.

The other side of the coin is, of course, that men also escape criticism because they avoid the salon.

While a screen idol like George Clooney has been dubbed a “silver fox” for letting their gray hair grow out, women are accused of not bothering and succumbing to aging if they don’t reach for the dye.

It seems that in this age of equality, hair color is one of the last bastions of sexism.

The polio shot will be offered to a million children aged one to nine in London. It is appalling that this disease, which has been responsible for so many deaths and such a devastating disability, is making a comeback. I worry that we have become so complacent about parents not getting their child vaccinated.

  • Every day I do something I know is ridiculous: I take vitamin supplements, including capsules with garlic and cod liver oil. I have a fairly balanced diet, am not sick, pregnant or alcoholic, so I definitely don’t need them. A Harvard study recently found that most supplements have no real benefit for normal adults. So why am I doing it? I don’t feel healthier or less cold. But I don’t worry about my diet anymore. I don’t feel guilty if I eat a pizza and leave the salad, or eat sugary cereal instead of muesli. In my opinion, the scaremongering by the medical and scientific communities about how we’re not eating right has led to the supplement boom. I haven’t gotten more arrogant in my attitude to my health since taking them, just less concerned about it.

DR MAX PRESCRIPTION…

LISTEN TO THE RADIO

Listening to the radio may help prevent dementia, finds research published in the journal Neurology

Listening to the radio may help prevent dementia, finds research published in the journal Neurology

Listening to the radio may help prevent dementia, according to research published in the journal Neurology. Along with other mentally stimulating activities such as reading, it was found to be the best pastime for preventing the disease, reducing the risk by 23 percent. Walking and yoga reduced it by just 17 percent.

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