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15 Signs That You Genuinely Love What You’re Doing

15 Signs That You Genuinely Love What You’re Doing

You either like your job, or you hate it – right? It’s not really that simple, because you need to genuinely love what you’re doing! Loving your job means you feel like your life has a greater purpose, and you’re not working just for the paycheck – you want to make a difference in the world. Check out these signs and see if you should stay with your current job, or search for something that will be more fulfilling for your life.

1. You don’t struggle to stay focused on the task at hand.

If your mind wanders while you’re at work, you often have to shake yourself out of the daydream and stay disciplined so you don’t forget the task at hand. When you genuinely love your job, this isn’t a problem. In fact, it’s the opposite – you don’t struggle to stay on task, you struggle to decide which task to tackle first! You come in every day, look at your To Do list, and prioritize all the things you have to do, because otherwise you’d jump from task to task trying to eagerly tackle them all at once!

2. You talk about the good things other people do, instead of talking about other people.

Work gossip can be a fun way to pass the time, but it can also turn vicious quickly, and rumors can start to spread, whether or not they are true. Instead of talking about coworkers behind their backs, if you genuinely love what you do, you’re more likely to talk about the good things others are doing. You’re not jealous that a coworker got a promotion and you don’t start spreading rumors about how he got it. Instead, you’re genuinely proud of him for working hard and getting what he deserves. It’s not hard to stop listening to gossip and start spreading praise and good deeds around the office.

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3. You enjoy your time at work.

Sure, if we had a choice sometimes we’d all rather be someplace else than sitting at our desk: at home, on the beach, climbing a mountain. But if you really love what you’re doing, you’re glad you’re at work when you have to be. You don’t spend time hating your surroundings and wishing you were elsewhere – you know you’re at work because you have tasks to do, and you gladly do them.

4. You think about winning instead of surviving.

I know I’ve had days where I think “If I can just make it through this day and go home…” But the better way to phrase that thought is to think “I need to win today.” Feeling like you have to survive through something automatically puts a pessimistic spin on it. It’s better to think that you can win the day — that you can conquer all your obstacles and come out on top.

5. You’re excited about what you’re doing.

If you love what you’re doing, you’re excited about it! You know you’re doing good and making a difference, and you get excited to go in to work and spend your time doing your job. You love telling others all about what you do, and you like getting them just as passionate about it. True excitement is infectious, so if you feel this way about your job, everyone is going to know it!

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6. You hardly ever watch the clock.

There are days when you start watching the clock at 4:00pm, and every minute ticks by so slowly it feels like five. Then there are days when you lose track of time, and they’re turning off the lights while you’re still working! Which days go faster? Which make you feel better? The ones where you lose track of time, right? Right! Because you’re so swept up in what you’re doing that you forget everything around you. Now that’s loving what you do!

7. You view success in terms of fulfillment and gratification.

If you’re happy with your job, you don’t see success as how much you’re making or how many promotions you’ve racked up. You see success as how fulfilled you are with your job, how it makes you feel to be doing something you love, something that will make a difference. You love your job even if it doesn’t pay much, because you want to be doing something that makes you happy as opposed to something that makes you rich.

8. You help others without thinking.

Instead of sabotaging others to try and get ahead and make yourself look better, when you love your job, you just want to do good things. You help others because you’re all working towards the same goal. You feel confident with your position at work because you know you’re good and love what you do, so you don’t feel threatened by helping others, even if you get little or no credit in return.

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9. You have friends at work.

Friends make everything better! When you have friends at work, you have a support system. You have people rooting for you, and people you can brainstorm with you make the work environment a better place for everyone. You have people you can vent to if necessary, and know they’ll understand where you’re coming from. Having friends at work also proves that you’re happy at work, because no one wants to spend eight hours a day with a grump!

10. Your weekends are time to recharge for Monday.

Everybody loves the weekend, and there’s nothing wrong with that. But when you truly love what you do, those two days off are just time to recharge for the next work week. Sure you can have fun, go out of town, spend time with friends, but you’re still getting ready for upcoming work.

11. You hate calling in sick.

This might not be true when you’re sweating out a fever or hunched over the toilet bowl, but overall, you hate calling in sick to work. You want to be there to keep making progress on your projects. You don’t want to miss anything. The day you come back, you’re hounding your coworkers about what happened while you were gone, what meetings, or even new inside jokes you missed! No one wants to be sick, but it’s extra hard for you because you love your job so much.

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12. You find solutions instead of griping about problems.

Encountering a problem is a speed bump for anyone – it might stall you momentarily, but then you decide: do I complain until it gets worse, or someone else takes it away, or do I solve it myself right now? When you’re a proactive worker, problems are nothing to you. You’re excited by the challenge of having an issue to solve, and you jump on it to make sure it doesn’t throw off  the flow of work any more than it already has.

13. You hope to get more work instead of dread it.

Going along with proactively finding solutions to workplace problems, people who truly love what they do always hope for more work. When your boss is assigning new projects at a meeting, you don’t sink down in your seat and hope she overlooks you. You don’t want to keep floating by doing nothing, you want work to keep you busy and give you chances to prove your worth!

14. You’re not bothered by petty things at work.

Gossip is petty, but it can get under your skin whether you like it or not. When you love your job, it’s easy to focus only on your work duties, and let petty office politics and gossip roll right off your back. You don’t acknowledge the rumors and you don’t keep them going – you just stay on your own path and do the best job you can.

15. You’re working for the big picture.

If you love your job, you know it’s a group effort. You know everyone is working together for a major cause. You know the big picture is more important than you getting credit for one step on the ladder. You love this aspect of the job, because you know everyone is looking out for – not each other – but for the purpose. The big picture is more important than any person within in.

Featured photo credit: Closeup of a young man painting on canvas on studio floor via shutterstock.com

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Last Updated on April 11, 2019

How to Improve Communication Skills for Workplace Success

How to Improve Communication Skills for Workplace Success

Possessing strong communication skills will help you in every phase of your life. This is especially true in the workplace.

I have personally worked with several leaders who were masters of communication. A few were wonderful speakers who could tell a great story and get everyone in the room engaged. Those of us in attendance would walk away feeling inspired and eager to help with what came next. Others were very skilled at sharing a clear direction and job expectations.

I knew exactly what was expected of me and how to achieve my goals. This was the foundation of an energized and vibrant role I was in. What I have found is strong communication skills are incredibly helpful and sometimes critical in how well we perform at work.

Here we will take a look at how to improve communication skills for workplace success.

How Communication Skills Help Your Success

Strong communication skills pave the way for success in many ways. Let’s look at a few of the big ones.

Create a Positive Experience

Here are two examples of how well developed communication skills helps create a positive experience:

When I first moved to the city I now live in, I began a job search. Prior to my first live interview, I was told an address to go to. Upon arriving at the address provided, I drove around and around attempting to find the location. After 15 minutes of circling and looking for the address, I finally grabbed a parking spot and set out on foot.

What I discovered was the address was actually down an alley and only had the number over the door. No sign for the actual company. The person that gave me those very unclear directions provided a bad experience for me.

Had they communicated the directions to get there in a clear manner, my experience would have been much better. Instead the entire experience started off poorly and colored the entire meeting.

As a recruiter, I frequently provide potential candidates with information about a job I’m speaking to them about. In order to do this, I also provide a picture of the overall company, the group they might be joining, and how their role fits in and impacts the entire company.

Time and time again I have been told by candidates that I have provided the clearest picture of a company and role they have ever heard. They have a positive experience when I clearly communicate to them. Even when the position does not work out for them, often times they will want to stay in touch with me due to the open communication and beneficial experience they had during the interviewing process.

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Strong communication skills will provide a positive experience in virtually any interaction you have with someone.

Help Leadership Skills

It’s certainly a skill all its own to be able to lead others.

Being a mentor and guiding others towards success is a major hallmark of great leaders. Another characteristic of effective leaders is the ability to communicate clearly.

As I referenced above, having a leader who can plainly articulate the company’s mission and direction goes a really long way towards being the Captain of the boat that others want to follow. It’s like saying “here’s our destination and this is how we are going to get there” in a way that everyone can get on board with.

Another critical component of everyone helping to sail the boat in the right direction is knowing what your portion is all about. How are you helping the boat move towards its destination in the manner than is consistent with the leaders’ vision?

If you have a boss or a manager that can show you what it takes for not only you to be successful, but also how your performance helps the company’s success then you’ve got a winner. A boss with superior communication skills.

Build Better Teams

Most of us work in teams of some sort or another. During the course of my career, I have led teams up to 80 and also been an individual contributor.

In my individual contributor roles, I have been part of a larger team. Even if you are in business for yourself, you have to interact with others in one manner or another.

If you have strong communication skills, it helps to build better teams. This is true whether you are in an IT department with 100 other fellow programmers or if you own your own business and have customers or vendors you communicate with.

When you showcase your robust ability to communicate well with others while interacting with them, you are building a better team.

Now let’s jump in to how to improve communication skills to help you pave the way for your workplace success.

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How to Improve Communication Skills for Workplace Success

There are many tips, tricks, and techniques to improve communication skills. I don’t want to overwhelm you with too much information, so let’s focus on the things that will provide the biggest return on your time investment.

Most of these tips will be fairly easy to become aware of but will take time and effort to implement. So let’s go!

1. Listen

Ever heard the saying you have two ears and one mouth for a reason? If you haven’t, then here’s the reason:

Being a good listener is half the equation to being a good communicator.

People who have the ability to really listen to someone can then actually answer questions in a meaningful way. If you don’t make the effort to actively listen, then you are really doing yourself and the other person a disservice in the communication department.

Know that person who is chomping at the bit to open his or her mouth the second you stop talking? Don’t be that person. They haven’t listened to at least 1/2 of what you’ve said. Therefore the words that spill out of their mouth are going to be about 1/2 relevant to what you just said.

Listen to someone completely and be comfortable with short periods of silence. Work on your listening skills first and foremost.

2. Know Your Audience

Knowing your audience is another critical component to having strong communication skills. The way you interact with your manager should be different than how you interact with your kids. This isn’t to say you need to be a different person with everyone you interact with. Far from it.

Here is a good way to think about it:

Imagine using your the same choice of words and body language you use with your spouse while interacting with your boss. That puts things in a graphic light!

You want to ensure you are using the type of communication most relevant to your audience.

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3. Minimize

I have lunch with a business associate about 3 times a year. We’ve been talking for several years now about putting a business deal together.

He is one of those people that simply overwhelms others with a lot of words. Sometimes when I ask him a question, I get buried beneath such an avalanche of words that I’m more confused than when I asked the question. Needless to say this is most likely a large portion of why we never put the deal together.

Don’t be like my lunch business associate. The goal of talking to or communicating with someone is to share actual information. The goal is not to confuse someone, it’s to provide clarity in many cases.

State what needs to be stated as succinctly as possible. That doesn’t mean you can’t have some pleasant conversation about the weather too.

The point is to not create such an onslaught of words and information that the other person walks away more confused than when they started.

4. Over Communicate

So this probably sounds completely counter intuitive to what I just wrote about minimizing your communication. It seems like it might be but it’s not.

What I mean by over communicating is ensuring that the other person understands the important parts of what you are sharing with them. This can be done simply yet effectively. Here’s a good example:

Most companies have open enrollment for benefits for the employees in the fall. The company I work for has open enrollment from November 1 to 15. The benefits department will send out a communication to all employees around October 1st, letting them know open enrollment is right around the corner and any major changes that year. There’s also a phone number and email for people to contact them with any questions.

Two weeks later, we all get a follow up email with basically the same information. We get a 3rd communication the week before open enrollment and another one 1 day before it starts.

Finally we get 2 emails during enrollment reminding us when open enrollment ends.

There’s minimal information, it’s more of a reminder. This is effective over communication.

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5. Body Language

The final critical component to how to improve communication skills for workplace success is body language. This is something most of us have heard about before but, a reminder is probably a good idea.

When I am in a meeting with someone I am comfortable with, I tend to kind of slouch down in my chair and cross my arms. When I catch myself doing this, I sit up straight and uncross my arms. I remember that crossing arms can many times be interpreted as a sign of disagreement or conflict.

In general, the best rule of thumb is to work towards having open body language whenever possible at work. This means relaxing your posture, not crossing your arms, and looking people in the eye when speaking with them.

When you are speaking in front of others, stand up straight and speak in a clear voice. This will convey confidence in your words.

Conclusion

Possessing strong communication skills will help you in many facets of your life and most certainly in the workplace.

Good communication helps create better teams, positive experiences with those we interact with, and are critical for leadership.

There are numerous tactics and techniques to be used to improve communication skills. Here we’ve reviewed how to improve communication skills for workplace success.

Now go communicate your way to success.

More Resources About Effective Communication

Featured photo credit: HIVAN ARVIZU via unsplash.com

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