Last year, Ben Southall beat out 34,000 other applicants in a competition for the “best job in the world.” The job was a six month assignment to explore and blog about the Great Barrier Reef Island off the coast of Queensland in northeast Australia while earning a cool six figure sum.
Since July, Southall has been hard at work living in paradise, strolling the beaches, exploring the wonders of the sea, scuba diving, surfing, sailing, and having breakfast with koalas. But, last week while on the job, he was stung by a Irukandji jellyfish, proving that every job – even the very best job – has its ups and downs.
Found mostly near Austrailia, Irukandji jellyfish are miniscule to the human eye but extremely venomous. Despite their size, they pack a powerful and sometimes even fatal punch. Fortunately, Southhall has fully recovered from his injury and is back on the beach for another day at the office.
Whether you’re being stung by a venomous jellyfish, dealing with an annoying coworker, being buried under a load of paperwork, or having to let someone go, every job has its bad days. These days are not a lot of fun, but they are an opportunity to learn, develop, and grow personally and professionally.
Dealing professionally with an annoying coworker can teach you how to respond tactfully in difficult situations – a must for developing management skills. Tackling the paperwork that is stacking up can help you learn to prioritize, and manage your tasks and time. And, if you’re paying close attention, it can even teach you when to ask for help or direction. A dangerous jellyfish sting taught Southhall to always wear a stinger suit when in the Australia waters.
The bad days can help prepare you for future obstacles and challenges. They can force you to diagnose inefficient areas in your work processes to adjust and avoid future pain. Bad days help you recognize and appreciate the good ones. After all, what would good days be without bad ones to compare them to? So, the next time you’re faced with a bad day or even a number of bad days, take a deep breath, and focus on what you can gain from it.