15 Reasons Why People Hate Corporate Life


Many people have this burning question…

Why do people hate corporate life?

Well, in this article, I’m going to fill you in on all the 15 reasons why (most) people hate corporate life. So, let’s unpack right away.

1) Corporate Life Is Unnatural

Corporate life is a very unnatural way of life. We think we can survive in the concrete jungle, but that is not who we innately are. We are human beings that thrive in nature and not in concrete buildings. We need nature to survive. And we’ve lost that connection in general, but people with corporate life lost that connection even more. And they get a feeling at their job “I don’t belong here,” which is so absolutely true. Corporate life is the opposite of how life is supposed to be and how it is designed for human beings.

“A man is part of nature, and his war against nature is inevitably a war against himself.”

2) It Starves Your Soul

Just as I mentioned above, the corporate world is not a good match for a human being (with a soul).

You can make a lot of money, but that also comes with a price. Over time most people will discover that this price is simple too high. Because in corporate life, there is no room for your soul. Many people feel they have to sell their souls to survive corporate life, which is why they hate it.

Your soul will be emptied out, and human qualities like empathy, compassion, and trust will be drained out as these qualities will get you into trouble.

3) You’re A Piece In A Big Chess Game

In corporate life, you feel more like a number than a person. You feel that even though you work hard and do your best, most companies give you the feeling that you are replaceable. And you’re just a piece in their big chess game where they move around the pieces. Or they move you, the puppet, in a puppet show and don’t care about your feelings and needs. You feel pushed, but you have no control over the direction you’re going.

Your opinions don’t matter as much, and if you’re too critical or do not bend when they want you to bend, they will make your life a lot more difficult.

Some environments are extremely toxic, where people have no empathy for others, and work becomes the survival of the fittest game. Coworkers do not mind stabbing you in the back to become in a better position for themselves because everyone is surviving, and when you’re in survival mode, not the best in people will come out.

At some point in time, people realize that they are more significant than being a screw in a big machine.

4) People Hate Corporate Politics

Let’s be honest, nobody like politics. The ones that do are far away from their true selves. And as you climb the corporate ladder, the politics and backstabbing get worse, so you’re almost forced to play along with these games to keep your job, pride, and image.

Favoritism and sucking up to the boss, we’ve all seen it. And the worst part is that it is rewarded. This behavior that nobody wants to see in their own children is normal in corporate life.

When you want to have a promotion or want to be assigned a fun project, you almost feel forced to go along with these political games as well, even to make a chance. And that is when people start to hate corporate life because they hate themselves for showing these kinds of behaviors within themselves and others.

And this can feel like you’re selling your soul to survive in this type of atmosphere, or you feel you need to do this in order to keep your job and survive the life (prison you’re in) of paying bills, mortgage, and whatnot.

5) Corporate Life Is All About The Ego

The ego is the false image we have of ourselves that is created by society, upbringing, and our experiences with the outer world. Your soul is your true self. The ego is controlled by the mind, whereas the soul speaks through the heart. The hardest part is that the mind is the screamer, and the heart speaks in a soft voice, which is why you need to pay attention and quiet the mind to be able to hear this voice.

In a fast-paced corporate life, you’re forced only to get information from the mind and work with logic because you often have no time to listen to the heart. And let’s be honest, nobody in the corporate world takes you seriously when you talk about intuition and stuff like that.

The corporate world is ego driven because everything runs on fear, power, money, lack, self-serving, competition, and control and is very future-orientated. The soul is the opposite, as seen in the image below.

When you live an ego-driven life, you are more detached from your heart and your true self. And people start to feel that. And that is a big reason why they hate corporate life, because they literally are pushed further and further away from who they truly are.

6) Your Human Needs Are Insignificant

Every person has different needs and a different biological rhythm (some people are morning persons vs. others are evening persons). And the seasons, planets, and personal life all have an effect on us. But there is no room for this in corporate life. Your working hours, breaks, etc., are set. There is no room for human needs.

Many companies expect employees to be cooperative and flexible 24/7, but when there is a request from an employee for the company to be a little bit more flexible due to an emergency or other important human need, the company doesn’t cooperate.

I learned this the hard way. I worked my *ss off for a specific company until I got sick. Sick from working too hard. I was always there for them and solved the problems when sh*t hit the fan. But were they there for me when I needed them? Nope. Unfortunately, this happens a lot to many people, which is why they hate corporate life. People cannot count on their employers but feel trapped because they also need the job.

7) Money Is More Important Than People

Companies (especially big companies) are only interested in making more money. And when the bottom line is money, the value of everything else drops to zero, such as people, service, values, environmental footprints, etc. It is all about making as much money as possible, and that means having the costs as low as possible. Anything that the company thinks is too expensive but can be of huge value for its employees will be cut away.

8) Targets Are More Important Than Daily Needs

Corporate life is future-orientated. Every company has a goal and a number of working toward, such as X amount of revenue in year XXXX. These goals are cut down into smaller goals and individualized per employee or project group.

Although working towards a goal gives you direction, it can also be taken to the extreme. And that is often the case in the corporate world. Closer to a deadline or target, breaks are often cut away, and people are expected to work many hours of overtime, and their health and personal life aren’t important anymore.

Anything and everything is been pushed to the side to achieve this (unrealistic) target.

9) You Have To Conform Constantly

The company has a worker’s manual and company standards to which you have to adjust yourself constantly. In the way you speak, think, dress, eat, work, post on social media, etc. Always adjusting is associated with stress, which is why people hate corporate life. They want to live autonomously, but they can’t. Humans are autonomous beings, so this is an unnatural environment.

10) Higher Demands And Lesser Benefits

For the last couple of years, the pressure has been building up. The corporate world asks much more from its employees than ever before. This accelerated with the arrival of smartphones, where all humans were reachable 24/7, and companies to this to their advantage.

For employees, it has become more difficult to set boundaries and maintain their mental and physical health. The same job now causes more stress than 10 or 20 years ago due to the increasing responsibilities and higher demand, plus all the constant stimuli from phones, tablets, etc. Email is a fast communication technique, but everyone receives hundreds of emails a day and expects to get an answer quickly. Also, everyone is trying to put on the most perfect life online whether it is job related or private life.

This situation causes more stress for all people in general, but also on a personal level when you can’t meet the high requirements. You go in survival mode.

It is no wonder that more and more people experience burnout or burnout symptoms, which include physical and emotional exhaustion, because they are dealing with immense stress trying to meet expectations and rising demands. According to a recent online study: 76% of U.S. employees are currently experiencing worker burnout.

The same happened to me as well. I made the conscious decision to retire from the rat race and live a more stress-free life that isn’t controlled by others.

11) Working Hours Are Stretched

The lines between working and off hours have become blurry, with often no compensation, benefits in return, and a lack of appreciation. Having a smartphone doesn’t help with that. Many people have one phone for work and personalife and receive work text and work emails also when they’re off.

Off hours can’t be used for winding down anymore, because everyone is on alert mode constantly. This constant stimali to our brains makes our body release an all sorts of hormones that isn’t healthy on a long term basis. You don’t feel like you’re off work, when you still receive work related information.

It is hard for employees to set boundaries, turn off their work phone or switch of their own phone to really enjoy downtime.

12) You Feel Like A Modern-Day Slave

Someone else is deciding your working hours, your off hours, what time you eat, approve your holiday (in high season prices!), how well you do your job, etc. Someone else has a lot of influence on your quality of daily life. Your life is instantly badly affected when he or she doesn’t like you or lacks empathy. And for many people, this feels like modern slavery, and why they hate corporate life.

But let’s call it like it is. Corporate life is modern-day slavery, and that is why we retired from this unhealthy system.

Here is what best-selling author James Altucher on Quora says about corporate life so you can decide for yourself:

“Jobs are modern-day slavery. We are paid just enough to live and not more. You are punished if you ask for more. The government gets up to 50% of your paycheck, and then 10-20% of that goes to kill people on other parts of the planet, including our own children. 

You realize that all the dollars you spent on degrees to get you a job that will make you happy were completely wasted. You were scammed, but you can’t let the next generation know, so now you have become part of perpetuating the scam. 

A trillion-dollar marketing campaign forced you to buy a house you didn’t want, and now you will “lose a house” you never really owned if you don’t bow down to the Masters daily. The words “The American Dream” were coined by Fannie Mae in a marketing campaign 40 years ago to sell mortgages to slaves. 

Your IRA was not intended to provide for your retirement. It was intended to take money from you every month, so you remain chained to your cubicle. Inflation then takes 90% of your IRA.  By definition: you create more value than you earn. That spread, minus executive salaries, is called “profit.” This is not an “-ism”. Just a definition. 

When you were a kid, you liked to draw, read, run, laugh, play, and imagine a magical world. You’re never going to do any of that again. Over time everyone is getting fired and being replaced by younger, cheaper, more temporary versions of you. You see this but are afraid to do anything about it.”

13) It Is Draining Your Energy

When you don’t do things you love, it costs energy instead of giving you energy. And when there is less energy going in your tank, than it comes out. Then you know your job is draining you out. And in most cases in corporate life, a job is costing more energy than it gives you. You slowly get exhausted more and more and you get susceptible for more and more diseases.

14) You Can’t Be Your Authentic Self

Many companies ask for you to be a professional. This often means you need to dress a certain way, act a certain way, say certain things, and, more importantly, avoid certain topics. In order to be able to survive corporate life, you need to take on a character role and stay away from your authentic self to fit in. This causes dissociation from your true and authentic self and causes stress in the long run.

If you need to play this character 40+ hours a week, you’re living a double life for the majority of your life. At a certain point, the lines become blurry, and you don’t know who you are anymore. Your identity is too attached to your job position. The longer you play this character, the longer the stress builds up in your body until there comes the point where you’re body says NO. And you have a burn-out, which your body gives you the most obvious signal to change your life around and work towards the life path that aligns with your soul’s purpose.

15) It Is Serving Self vs. Serving Society

Corporate life doesn’t contribute to society. The main goal is to earn as much money as possible for the company, not society.

And your purpose in life is serving others. That is fulfilling and meaningful. And when you’re in corporate life and not contributing to society somehow, you feel worthless. You hate it because it doesn’t serve your higher good/ your higher self. Your soul is thinking about WE instead of ME.

Companies are entirely self-serving and when we notice how they behave, we know they are behaving like insane and like money-grubbing machines rather than like caring for people. So we hate them because of their unnatural behavior.

Kirsten Veldman

I'm Kirsten. In 2017, my husband Léon, and I decided to retire from the rat race to travel the world and work and live location independently. In the last couple of years, I wrote over 200+ articles about retirement and did extensive research to help people prepare, enjoy and celebrate retirement in the best way possible.

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