When Safety Is Not Fun Anymore

This site began as a way to inspire and encourage safety and health professionals who want to make a difference and to share ideas, techniques, and perspectives on the EHS career field.

But what if you’re done with safety? What if working in EHS for 20 or 30 years has taken a toll on your energy and your mind? What if the profession that once brought you joy now just really bores you and at the end of a hard week you feel more drained than inspired?

First, it’s normal. It’s nothing to hide from or be ashamed of.

Secondly, it won’t just get better. And yes, you can pretend it’s not happening and come to work next week, next year, and even the next decade. No one doubts your work ethic…you’ve proven how strong you are time and time again.

Peter Drucker, in “The Essential Drucker”, offers sage advice for this exact situation.

He writes about the problem,

 “For the first time in human history, individuals can expect to outlive organizations. This creates a totally new challenge: What to do with the second half of one’s life?…There is a great deal of talk today about the “midlife crisis” of the executive. It is mostly boredom. At age forty-five most executives have reached the peak of their business career and they know it…but few are learning anything anymore, few are contributing anything anymore, and few expect the job again to become a challenge and a satisfaction.”

And offers these solutions,

“There are three answers. The first is to actually start a second and different career…The second answer is to…develop a parallel career…and then finally – the third answer – there are the social entrepreneurs.”

With both warning and encouragement,

“People who manage the ‘second half’ may always be a minority. The majority may keep doing what they are doing now, that is, retire on the job, continue being bored, keeping on with their routine, and counting the years until retirement. But it is this minority, the people who see the long working-life expectancy as an opportunity both for themselves and for society, who will increasingly become the leaders and the models. They, increasingly, will be the ‘success stories.’”

May you continue to be in the minority.

Drucker writes in an honest style throughout the book. Both “The Essential Drucker” and “The Effective Executive: The Definitive Guide to Getting the Right Things Done ” (another timeless classic by Drucker) are worthy of shelf space in your library.

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