We all have to do it, but that doesn’t mean that it comes easy… going to work that is!

Some days, we hop in the car and go out of habit and we’re at our destination before we know it. And the day has begun. Other days, we dread to put one foot in front of the other because we know with each step we take, it takes us a little closer to where we’re going to be spending the next eight hours. Those eight hours when your head isn’t “in the game” can be excruciatingly long, extremely dull, and leave you yearning to see the clock’s hands move just one iota.
For those days where you think you just can’t face going in one more time, I offer you 14 motivations to help you answer the question “What’s in it for me?”

1. Make your work-space an inviting space

Who wants to drive in to work knowing there’s a monotone-colored cubicle and matching desk accessories waiting for you? Create a space that is “you!” If you have an agreeable supervisor who doesn’t mind a few touches from home, dress up your space with plants or a few pictures of the people you love most. Put up motivating quotes on colorful backgrounds or print some out and frame them. Not only will you make a space you feel comfortable in, but your co-workers will see how you took ownership of an area and the things you chose to surround yourself with… you can motivate others in this subtle way!

2. Reward yourself for perfect attendance

Why not? We were rewarded as children. When we were attending elementary and high school, our job WAS school and we were rewarded for showing up. Make a point of being at work ten to fifteen minutes before you are required to and track whether or not you’re successful. “X” off every day you made it in early and give yourself a treat for five days in a row or whatever time frame you designate. I advise keeping this one to yourself though, sometimes there are clock-Nazis watching and taking their own notes too!

3. You get to mentally challenge yourself

When we go to work, we get the opportunity to be challenged both creatively and intellectually. Problems are present every day. Being present in body as well as in mind gives us a chance to stretch our thinking and personally challenge ourselves to strive for success. Track these times when you feel excited by new approaches to performing your job – being able to reflect on these times will aid you in your ability to have an air of gratitude.

4. You spark your own creativity

Going to work allows us to think outside of the proverbial “box.” Each day you get in your car to go to work, try thinking: What will I learn today? Maybe it’s the chance and the training ground you need to learn how to be creative. Why not keep a little notebook and jot down when your idea was used or a portion of it? Tracking these things and bringing them up during performance evaluations could further your position within the company.

5. You experience positive interaction with others

Whether you view yourself as being a private person or not, interaction with co-workers cannot be underestimated. When we go to work and engage in conversation, work-related or about life in general, we are engaging in social behavior that gives us a sense of being connected with the human race.

6. You can help others

Our willingness to go to work earns us the financial capability to touch the lives of others through charitable activities. Because we show up at work, we are afforded the opportunity to make a difference in the life of someone not capable of changing their circumstances on their own. We are able to “give back” because we work.

7. You are able to provide for your family and yourself

Whether you are a member of a family or it may be just you, the cold hard truth is that you need to be motivated by financial responsibilities, the mortgage or rent, electricity, insurances, phone, and food. Your job enables you to afford the things in life that you not only want but you at the basic level need.

8. You gain self-respect

Going to work and obtaining a reputation for not only being dependable, but someone who people can trust boosts your self-respect. Knowing that someone relies on your talents and knowledge gives you value and makes you feel confident in the work you are called to do.

9. You enjoy a sense of completion

Whether you work at a fast-food chain or an executive office, there is a mission for that day. There is always something that needs to be accomplished. Participating in that work gives you a sense of completion because you know you were involved in the process to make the end result or product come about.

10. You establish a career path

Any job you hold should be viewed as a stepping stone to the next phase in your life. Look at your current position as a “testing ground” for the next big thing that will come along in life!

11. You can afford a certain lifestyle

A powerful motivation to go to work is knowing that the money you earn can potentially afford you a lifestyle you want to enjoy. Do you long to travel? Own your own business? What dreams do you have that you long to fulfill? Showing up at work and planning for the things you want puts you on that path to that desired lifestyle – it all has to start somewhere, why not the motivation to go to work?

12. Go to bed earlier

I think by now we’re all pretty aware that we rarely get the correct amount of sleep that our body needs to restore itself for the next day. This results in multiple snooze-alarm-slaps in the morning hours and scrambling to get ready for the workday ahead. Eliminate this unnecessary stress and turn in early. It may take some getting used to, but you’ll feel better in the long run.

13. Prepare your lunch the night before

This very simple step can shave time off of your get-ready time in the morning! How nice would it be to just walk to the refrigerator and pull out the bag you prepared the night before?

14. Select and prepare your outfit the night before

Take time out to go to the closet and pick out what you intend to wear for the next day. If it needs ironing, do it before you go to bed! Again, a huge time saver in the morning! Once you’re done with showering and grooming, simply walk to your closet and take out what you got ready the night before. This eliminates the stress of picking something, ironing, and possibly running late especially if you discover at the last minute there’s a missing button or worse yet, a hole in your favorite shirt or blouse.

The bottom line is: work is what we choose to make it. If you want to continue to dread it and find ways to escape being there, that’s a personal choice. But if you’d like to have peace of mind, grow as a person, and feel excitement about the role you play at your workplace then turn your thinking around and consider what you gain from being there besides just the paycheck!

Featured photo credit: epSos.de via flickr.com

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