Are we so head-down stressing about ROI and getting a seat at the big kids table and strategy and all that serious business stuff that we're losing sight of how much fun this work really is? (If it helps, refer to planning and strategy as "plotting and scheming"—I find that right away makes it less of a drag.) I mean come on, who else gets to do the kind of work we do in most organizations? Think they're doing all this creative stuff down in accounting? I know accountants who are really good at accounting and actually enjoy it. But do they have fun? Not so sure they do. But we communicators, we get all the fun stuff. In fact, if your world is anything like mine, you've probably had people from other parts of the organization tell you that from time to time. "You guys get all the fun stuff, don't you?" they ask with this slightly accusatory tone and a wistful look in their eyes.
The professional storyteller who hates his work is as unwanted a foolish failure as the circus clown who drinks between shows. Let's see: You work in a non-essential field that doesn't pay much—and you hate it?
Of course I feel sorry for people who have painted themselves into any mid-career corner: I am unappreciated, I am not given creative freedom, communicating for corporations is like teaching art to Philistines.
But as the Lady Chablis is fond of saying, "Two tears in a bucket, motherfuck it."
And the pity of clients or bosses turns to contempt as fast as fruit rots.
So get yourself happy—because your own cheerfulness is the only status you'll ever have in this work, babe—or get busy finding a less miserable way to make a hell of a lot more money.
It's your life. It won't be perfect. But it doesn't have to be absurd.