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Create Your Best Life at Work with One Question

Create Your Best Life at Work with One Question

On ManagingWithAloha.com we have been talking about the Hawaiian value of ‘Imi ola this month; it means to create your best possible life. Let’s consider this; How do you accomplish ‘Imi ola while you are at work?

The biggest bang for the buck strategy is to choose the right work to begin with. There is a lot of basic common sense in the notion that you’ll never toil at a job again if you’ve chosen the right work for you in the first place. The “right” work is the kind you leap out of bed for each morning; work which makes your heart sing because you’re fully engaged in getting each of your talents to fire on all cylinders. It’s work that you’d do every single day if you possibly could because you enjoy it that much; getting paid for it is just icing on the cake.

What’s that? You don’t have that kind of job yet?

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It’s definitely something you can have; your first order of business is to go about making it happen. Keep looking till you find it!

Meanwhile, if there are reasons you’ve got to stick it out for a bit in the job you’ve got right now, how can you still make the best of it? How can you create your best life at work?

You milk it, by continually asking yourself, this one question: What’s in this for me?

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When I am called in to a company to coach, I study workplace behaviors. The one thing that saddens me most, is the amount of time that people willingly give away in their lives. They perform their work robotically, without energy or joy, in the most routine, blah sort of way because they are doing it for someone else or to pay the bills. Period.

You shouldn’t be so easily tamed.

When you create your best life at work, you milk it for whatever it can possibly mean to you and for you, even if it’s not your best possible world – yet. You have the attitude that, If I have to do this anyway, I may as well get the most that I can out of it. Value your time and make it yours. Value your life and make it yours. How can you give away something so extraordinary? How can you give away something so uniquely yours and so precious?

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Reinvent. Learn more. Go for the unconventional. Get others involved. Tweak and experiment. Do it louder, goofier, or fancier. Ignore boundaries or limits, and push toward edges. As the saying goes, Whatever turns you on.

Who knows? You just might find that ho-hum job of yours begins to reveal that job of the lifetime you’ve been looking for. You’ve experienced ‘Imi ola; creating your best possible life instead of simply allowing life to happen to you.

Related Post: To Do and To Stop with ‘Imi ola – a different approach to the traditional To Do List.

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Post Author:
Rosa Say is the author of Managing with Aloha, Bringing Hawaii’s Universal Values to the Art of Business. You can also visit her on www.ManagingWithAloha.com where she regularly writes about value alignment in business, as with ‘Imi ola.

More by this author

Rosa Say

Rosa is an author and blogger who dedicates to helping people thrive in the work and live with purpose.

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Last Updated on November 18, 2020

15 Tips to Restart the Exercise Habit (and How to Keep It)

15 Tips to Restart the Exercise Habit (and How to Keep It)

It’s okay, you can finally admit it. It’s been two months since you’ve seen the inside of the gym. Getting sick, family crisis, overtime at work and school papers that needed to get finished all kept you for exercising. Now, the question is: how do you start again?
Once you have an exercise habit, it becomes automatic. You just go to the gym, there is no force involved. But after a month, two months or possibly a year off, it can be hard to get started again. Here are some tips to climb back on that treadmill after you’ve fallen off.

  1. Don’t Break the Habit – The easiest way to keep things going is simply not to stop. Avoid long breaks in exercising or rebuilding the habit will take some effort. This may be advice a little too late for some people. But if you have an exercise habit going, don’t drop it at the first sign of trouble.
  2. Reward Showing Up – Woody Allen once said that, “Half of life is showing up.” I’d argue that 90% of making a habit is just making the effort to get there. You can worry about your weight, amount of laps you run or the amount you can bench press later.
  3. Commit for Thirty Days – Make a commitment to go every day (even just for 20 minutes) for one month. This will solidify the exercise habit. By making a commitment you also take pressure off yourself in the first weeks back of deciding whether to go.
  4. Make it Fun – If you don’t enjoy yourself at the gym, it is going to be hard to keep it a habit. There are thousands of ways you can move your body and exercise, so don’t give up if you’ve decided lifting weights or doing crunches isn’t for you. Many large fitness centers will offer a range of programs that can suit your tastes.
  5. Schedule During Quiet Hours – Don’t put exercise time in a place where it will easily be pushed aside by something more important. Right after work or first thing in the morning are often good places to put it. Lunch-hour workouts might be too easy to skip if work demands start mounting.
  6. Get a Buddy – Grab a friend to join you. Having a social aspect to exercising can boost your commitment to the exercise habit.
  7. X Your Calendar – One person I know has the habit of drawing a red “X” through any day on the calendar he goes to the gym. The benefit of this is it quickly shows how long it has been since you’ve gone to the gym. Keeping a steady amount of X’s on your calendar is an easy way to motivate yourself.
  8. Enjoyment Before Effort – After you finish any work out, ask yourself what parts you enjoyed and what parts you did not. As a rule, the enjoyable aspects of your workout will get done and the rest will be avoided. By focusing on how you can make workouts more enjoyable, you can make sure you want to keep going to the gym.
  9. Create a Ritual – Your workout routine should become so ingrained that it becomes a ritual. This means that the time of day, place or cue automatically starts you towards grabbing your bag and heading out. If your workout times are completely random, it will be harder to benefit from the momentum of a ritual.
  10. Stress Relief – What do you do when your stressed? Chances are it isn’t running. But exercise can be a great way to relieve stress, releasing endorphin which will improve your mood. The next time you feel stressed or tired, try doing an exercise you enjoy. When stress relief is linked to exercise, it is easy to regain the habit even after a leave of absence.
  11. Measure Fitness – Weight isn’t always the best number to track. Increase in muscle can offset decreases in fat so the scale doesn’t change even if your body is. But fitness improvements are a great way to stay motivated. Recording simple numbers such as the number of push-ups, sit-ups or speed you can run can help you see that the exercise is making you stronger and faster.
  12. Habits First, Equipment Later – Fancy equipment doesn’t create a habit for exercise. Despite this, some people still believe that buying a thousand dollar machine will make up for their inactivity. It won’t. Start building the exercise habit first, only afterwards should you worry about having a personal gym.
  13. Isolate Your Weakness – If falling off the exercise wagon is a common occurrence for you, find out why. Do you not enjoy exercising? Is it a lack of time? Is it feeling self-conscious at the gym? Is it a lack of fitness know-how? As soon as you can isolate your weakness, you can make steps to improve the situation.
  14. Start Small – Trying to run fifteen miles your first workout isn’t a good way to build a habit. Work below your capacity for the first few weeks to build the habit. Otherwise you might scare yourself off after a brutal workout.
  15. Go for Yourself, Not to Impress – Going to the gym with the only goal of looking great is like starting a business with only the goal to make money. The effort can’t justify the results. But if you go to the gym to push yourself, gain energy and have a good time, then you can keep going even when results are slow.

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