What do you do for a living? What’s your title? How much do you make? Do you want a raise? A promotion? A better boss?

I’m a Founder and Product Manager, and I influence people often without authority and build and ship products for a living. Part of that job is to iterate and make things better. And you know what? I’ve found that it applies to more than just products and features.

I have the distinct privilege of working with an incredible group of people. It’s a fast-paced, creative, get-s#it-done type of environment. And whether people report to me or not, the entire team is amazing and one with which I am proud to work. But it could be better. I could always be happier.

Every job could be better, right? The key difference between finding that place of “better” and staying disgruntled is:

Stop waiting for someone to save you!

Make your job what you want it to be. If it’s not better tomorrow than it was today, then that’s your fault. Nobody is going to magically show up and grant you delight and job satisfaction. I live this way. And in fact, I tell everyone that reports to me that exact same thing.

Just start doing the things you want to do in your role. Redefine what your role actually means. Do first and apologize later, don’t wait for permission. Responsibility can *only* be taken, it cannot be granted, given or approved. So take responsibility for your happiness. You’ll be SO glad you did. Even better, all the people around you and above you will be glad you did. Because you’ll be more productive, you’ll be a change agent, and you’ll be happy.

By the way, this works in startups, growth companies, established corporations and even for freelancers (I’ve done all the aforementioned).

Happy, and responsible, are traits that become contagious. Spread the happy by starting with yourself. Take control of your circumstances instead of being buried by them. You’ll ship more, deliver better art (whatever your art is), and progress faster.

//Previously published on Medium