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Little Things You Can Change For A Happier And Fulfilled Life

Little Things You Can Change For A Happier And Fulfilled Life

Sometimes, the cause of our unhappiness is our very own nature. We are naturally inclined with certain characteristics which needs to be changed in order for us to live a happier and fulfilled life. To hold on to these natural characteristics and still aspire to be happy and live a fulfilled life is impossible. The only thing that stands between you and happiness is you. Change these natural characteristics of you and find your way to a happier destination.

1. Selfishness

It is very easy to think of other people as selfish but the truth is we are all naturally selfish. Of course, some people may be more selfish than others but we all have a dose of selfishness in our genes. Whose face do you first look at in a group picture? You! And so does everyone else.

If all the people in the world remained selfish, then the world will be such a horrible place to live. Selfishness must be replaced with empathy and selflessness. We must realize that, others are important in the world too. We are not the only important people, we need to look out for others the same way we would want them to look out for us. We might not be homeless, but if we were the homeless person on the street, will we expect others to help us or walk by.

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When you trade selfishness for selflessness, you will realize that nothing is more fulfilling and joyful like helping and looking out for others. Help the homeless man get on his feet again, sponsor an orphan in Africa, with sites like this you can donate as little as $50 a month which will go a long way to change the future of others and give you the happiness and joy for making a difference.

2. Jealousy

If you are never truly happy at other people’s success, then you need to give it up for a fulfilled life. Jealousy rips away joy and happiness. Jealousy makes you angry, causes stress and can lead to depression. Jealousy blinds you of the great things in your life to be happy for and makes you miserable for the few things you don’t have that others have.

Be genuinely happy about other people’s success and not only when you will benefit from it. Being happy for others and giving up on jealousy will make you happier and successful, instead of being depressed and miserable by jealousy, your will be excited and more open to opportunities which will help you succeed.

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3. Use your brains and not emotions

It is very easy to be led by emotions and not the mind. But being led by emotions all the time will only lead to disaster. It is common sense to exercise daily, but not all of us do. It is common sense to save and invest, but not all of us do. It is common sense not to procrastinate, but most of us do. Common sense is not common action. This is as a result of the battle between emotions and mind. The mind knows it is right to exercise instead of watching TV, but our emotions ‘feels’ like watching TV instead. The mind knows it is a good thing to log out of social media and do something worthwhile with your time but your emotions ‘feels’ like spending more time on social media instead of attending to the business.

The mind road is very narrow and difficult and only few people take that road, the emotional road is very broad and easy and many people take that road. No wonder there are more unsuccessful people than successful people in the world.

4. Lack of self control/discipline

If you want to live a happier and fulfilled life. You need to have discipline. Knowledge is power but if you lack the discipline to do that which you know to do, knowledge becomes futile. In other words, knowledge is useless without discipline. If you know you do not have to eat junk food but lack the discipline and self control to actually not junk food, you will still be obese and unhealthy regardless the knowledge you have.

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5. Don’t dwell on negative comments

Isn’t it strange that one hundred people can tell us we look beautiful and compliment our personality and we soon forget but if one person tells us we look ugly it takes forever to forget, making us sad and bitter. Instead of dwelling on negative comments and letting positive comments die fast, rather let negative comments die fast and dwell on positive comments.

6. Judgemental

Ironically, we hate to be judged but find pleasure in judging others. We hate to hear mean things about us but never think twice in saying mean things about someone else. This is because naturally we are insensitive to other people’s feeling. We think others deserve our hurtful words and judgement but be mindful that to every one else in the world, you are the ‘other person’. Let us be less judgemental and correct others in love if need be. Every behaviour no matter how bizarre has meaning to the one performing it. Let’s be open-minded rather, there are more than enough judgemental people in the world already.

7. Unforgiveness

You pick up your husband’s phone and see naked pictures of other women on his phone. Your girlfriend whom you loved so much and invested your money, resources, love and time just left you for another person. You become the victim. Think of betrayal, hurt, pain, heartbreak, disappointment, you are a perfect definition. They don’t deserve forgiveness. You have cried and sobbed amidst the emotional trauma. You have two options; To hate them forever after all they are heartless, wicked and insensitive and to hold on to the scenes of their actions and tread on a bitterness lane-where you will always hurt inside and see them as the horrible beast they are or to put yourself together and say ‘you know what, they don’t deserve it, they are mean, wicked, betrayed me, disappointed me, defrauded me’ but I will forgive them not because I want to, but because I have to. Choosing the latter is the best decision.

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Forgiveness is hard to do initially but it’s worth it. Taking the bitterness lane is such a horrible way to live. We need to forgive and let go after all, we all have one thing in common, we are human beings and none of us are perfect. It’s true we may be hurt because someone has hurt us and find it hard to forgive but think of all the people you have hurt yourself in the past. To err is human, once you are human, you have hurt someone before too so forgive.

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Last Updated on February 18, 2019

How to Motivate Employees and Boost Team Productivity

How to Motivate Employees and Boost Team Productivity

These days, in a world with cognitive, AI, and extraordinary advances, we have failed at the most basic stimulus: motivation. Why do I say so? Just take a look at these statistics:

58 percent of managers said they didn’t receive any management training as per a CareerBuilder.com survey. Only 12% of employees leave their jobs because of more money. Research indicates that around 80% of employees leave their jobs due to “lack of appreciation”. Due to fear of failing, more than half of American workers don’t take their paid vacations. 53% of Americans are unhappy at work (not engaged). And 1 in 3 are working in a field they don’t like.[1]

Archaic people management and HR structures are the root cause.

“If you want to build a ship, don’t drum up the men to gather wood, divide the work, and give orders. Instead, teach them to yearn for the vast and endless sea.” – Antoine de Saint-Exupery

So how to motivate employees and boost team productivity?

Here are 3 key things that you can do to motivate your employees and boost team productivity:

1. Run Your Team/Group/Company like a Lean Startup

The Lean Startup phenomena by Eric Ries has been socialized across millions all over the globe. In a nutshell, it is a methodology for developing businesses and products, which aims to shorten product development cycles and rapidly discover if a proposed business model is viable; this is achieved by adopting a combination of business-hypothesis-driven experimentation, iterative product releases, and validated learning.[2]

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Encourage Your Employees

When you empower your employees (or family members) to do what they deem to be best for a particular roadblock, idea, or improvement, you create magic. You create genuine trust. You enable innovation. The result is happy, inspired employees who feel they have a say in the grand cosmic stage at work.

Note that increasing the competency level of employees and coaching and mentoring them along the way is key. You yourself, need to do the same. Nourish your brain – and get a mentor that will keep you at the edge of your game.

Offer Rewards

Motivation is also intrinsic. The startups I have worked at offered instant rewards — not just fat checks or equity increments, but Oscar-style nominations.

The non-monetary rewards were actually more coveted, and grandiose: lunch with the CEO, tickets to an Obama fund-raiser, horse-back riding with a world-class equestrian.

Compare this to a dodgy, corporate, white-cubicle dinosaur that had a “yearly performance review” where both parties dread the conversation. In a world of instant WhatsApp messages, having a conversation about performance, likes and dislikes cannot just happen annually in 60 minutes. Employees need to be rooted in the belief that their manager genuinely cares about them.

Give Autonomy

Another key attribute is autonomy. Most employees start brushing their resumes and cruising LinkedIn when their hands are tied in their current positions: approval forms, long meetings, escalations, and more meetings. In the world of agile and scrum masters, deliberating for the sake of deliberating is poison. You will choke the very employees that giddily accepted the job initially to “change the world”.

Within a reasonable realm of assessment and deep-dives, trust your employees to do the heavy lifting. Give them access to the knowledge, people and resources that help them directly make the choices that will shape the future of your team, and your company.

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Eliminate yourself as the bottleneck – and interject yourself as a benevolent, servant leader that is the symbol of high-performing organizations.

2. Apply the 90/90/1 Rule

I recently saw a video by Deepak Sharma (a leadership adviser) about productivity and this principle stuck with me. Here’s what it’s about:

Devote the First 90 Minutes of Your Day to Important Project

For the next 90 days, devote the first 90 minutes of your day to your most important project—nothing else. Do this for yourself and your employees.

We usually get sucked into the most wasteful, operational activities in the morning which robs our focus, and steers us into an unwanted rabbit hole. So mute your notifications, avoid the temptation to check your exploding inbox, and scroll your Instagram feed later. Instead, focus on that ONE thing that will provide real value to you, your team, or your business/company/home.

Apply this rule to yourself – and your team. Your team will thank you. Note: If you’re feeling really stretched for time, you can always hack the rule by testing out a “45/45/1” version.

A To Do Scheduling System

Another version of this is to use the Kanban concept, developed by Taiichi Ohno, an industrial engineer at Toyota. Kanban is a scheduling system employing boards and cards.

The most basic version is a canvas with “To-do”, “Doing”, and “Done” boards (or columns). Each activity or task is a “card” that moves from one column to the other. I use Trello (a Kanban-inspired app) that is a key system for my personal and professional life. It allows me to understand my workload, their priority, and due dates.

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I use importance and effort metrics (scores) for each task to understand what is truly necessary in my life to work on. It negates the FIFO (first-in, first out) paradox that has plagued millions of people. Instead, it allows me to take stock of what is on my plate, and then bite on what truly will move the needle for me, my team, my life, and my company.

With a limited appetite (at least for some), would you eat the veggies, fries, mashed potatoes and leave the sizzling steak? No, you wouldn’t (unless you are a vegan and ended up in the wrong restaurant).

Approach your work with a weighted vengeance – and encourage your team to do the same.

3. Align Passion and Skills to Purpose

The heart of human excellence often begins to beat when you discover a pursuit that absorbs you, frees you, challenges you, and gives you a sense of meaning, joy and passion.

“The most fortunate people on earth are those who have found a calling that’s bigger than they are—that moves them and fills their lives with constant passion, aliveness, and growth.” — Richard Leider

An ace team-member once told me that while she enjoys working for the company we both used to work at, she really hated anything to do with technology. She was more of a “people” person, and did not want to sit behind a desk sifting through lines of code.

What struck me was that she was in that role for more than a decade and had just spoken up. The good thing is she spoke up. She expressed her desire and interests. And it allowed her to get into a role of her liking within 30 days.

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Ask If They like What They’re Doing

If you, or a team member is frustrated, demotivated, or not performing at their best – one of the questions you should ask is whether they like what they are doing. Then genuinely try to help them get to the role they should be in (whether in the same team/company or not).

There’s a reason why 53% of Americans (and perhaps more or same across the globe) are unhappy at work. A butcher cannot be an ace salad maker. Pursue your passion – and help pave the way for your team. Unlock your potential and theirs. You will command and lead a supercharged team.

“Your time is limited, so don’t waste it living someone else’s life. Don’t be trapped by dogma – which is living with the results of other people’s thinking. Don’t let the noise of other’s opinions drown out your own inner voice. And most important, have the courage to follow your heart and intuition. They somehow already know what you truly want to become. Everything else is secondary.” – Steve Jobs

The Bottom Line

Sometimes, passion has to be ignited. It is dormant, clouded by busy-ness, buried by wrong career choices, and plagued by non-supportive eco-systems. Some will climb out of it, but we as society — and in the case of business teams — incumbent upon the manager/CEO/leader to foster, grow, and nurture the employee.

Teach her the ropes. Show her the path. Advise him as you would yourself. Let them lead, and make mistakes. Do not fear them, rather make them the leader you would want to become.

For your not-so-great team members, understand that it is not personal, it is just not a good fit. Help them move on to the pastures they would be fit to graze on. Hence, hire slow (and fire fast).

Your team is a reflection of you. Boosting their confidence and helping them achieve the impossible is motivation. Focus on that, and you will have a productive team that you and your company will be proud of.

More Resources About Team Management

Featured photo credit: rawpixel via unsplash.com

Reference

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