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Let’s talk LOVE at work: 9 Views

Let’s talk LOVE at work: 9 Views

Oh yeah, you knew this was coming from me at some point, didn’t you. This is the 21st Thursday column “the aloha lady” has written for Leon (thank you for loving me Leon!) and it’s February, just two days after Valentine’s Day, so I’m taking my shot.

Now don’t roll your eyes. Be brave, be open-minded, and keep reading, for you have to admit you’d love your job a whole lot more if there was a whole lot more to love about it. I’m hoping I can help you get there by helping you LOVE you at work.

Let’s do this: Empathy is a skill we all need in life, empathy being the ability to put yourself in someone else’s shoes. When you empathize with someone, you can feel some of the things they feel without being in their same circumstances. An exercise in empathy is a good way for us to look at this question of where LOVE is needed in business, and at work, so we start to reap some of the joy in it. You’ve got to agree that love is joyful!

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Through the eyes of a Visionary Leader:
We LOVE being at work when we feel our work is meaningful and worthwhile. It is meaningful and worthwhile when we have bought in to the purpose behind our Leader’s vision— if not, you need to choose a new leader. What is it that the Leaders in your work-life love so much about their vision? What notion do they LOVE and incessantly talk about so passionately? They believe that is why you have chosen to work with them.

Through the eyes of a Great Manager:
A Great Manager is looking for your talent and your strength, for he wants to optimize it and capitalize it— he’s bought in to that purpose behind the Leader’s vision too (and yes, sometimes he can have both roles) and he knows he needs you to help make it happen. You are the one who LOVES your own talents, the ones that make your heart sing. Have you come right out and told your manager what they are so he can LOVE them too? Have you showed him how you want to use them at work everyday, or are you still playing hide and seek with him? Great Managers are defined by their good intention, not by their ability to read your mind. Don’t have a Great Manager? Life is short; choose a new one who is.

Through the eyes of Your Peers:
This one is easy. Your Peers want to LOVE working with you. So exactly how lovable are you? Your Peers will define this through their working relationships with you, and you’ll define it through the kinds of relationships you LOVE having with them versus those that are hard to maintain because they are counter to what you value. Be Proactive and take control of your relationships. As Stephen Covey says, make some “emotional bank account deposits” —understand that it’s your account.

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Through the eyes of an Employee:
Let’s say you’re the manager or leader. No, already wrote about that…This is for everyone: What about the other employees at your workplace you interact with rarely to occasionally? They simply want to LOVE having you around. They want to consider you “one of the good guys” and one of their alternate resources. Are you the one they hope gets picked when there’s an interdepartmental team put together? Are you the one they talk about as the “one who knows,” the “really nice one,” or the “one that walks the talk?” When you are, it helps you LOVE being around them too; you feed off each other.

Through the eyes of a Customer:
What does the Customer LOVE about the product or service that your company provides for them? How do they perceive it actually improves the quality of their life? In my company, managers and leaders are our customers, and we work to bring nobility to their professions through the Managing with Aloha movement; we coach them to be our poster children, to be Great Managers and Visionary Leaders. When your passionate purpose for being at work is aligned with that LOVE of the Customer, that is, you believe that the work you do is critical to their getting it, you feel you LOVE your work. You’ve got to be there to deliver it to them. That’s the way the worthwhile, intentional jobs we LOVE work the best. I honestly believe it’s the only way.

Through the eyes of a Worthy Stockholder:
By now you can see a prevalent theme here is your ability to consciously choose the people you LOVE being in the company of. True, most of us are distanced from the Stockholders, however another reason we LOVE our work and our company, is when we think of our profits going to worthy Stockholders. Worthy because they’re aligned with our purpose and vision too. We feel they support us and we sense they LOVE being a Stockholder because it feels good and right: They LOVE knowing that their dividends are a result of delivering something meaningful to the Customer. They willingly reinvest in the company when we need them to.

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Through the eyes of Your Child:
If you are a parent, one of the greatest gifts you can give your child is demonstrating to them that you LOVE your job, and you LOVE the work you do. Otherwise, they will dread going to work when they grow up, and they will have a much more difficult job discovering their own talents and employing them in the best possible way. Give them the LOVE-liest picture you can of what work is all about. Talk to them about why you LOVE it, and how it gives you a life that you also LOVE. If you cannot do this truthfully, and with complete sincerity they will see right through you, for in their shorter lives they actually know you far better than you think. So if you can’t say it and mean it with the job you have now, make your number 1 priority finding the job you will LOVE.

Through the eyes of those Who Love You:
Your spouse, your siblings, your parents and friends, they want to LOVE you whole and happy. They hurt when you hurt, because they couldn’t turn off their unconditional love and acceptance of you if they tried. Work affects so much about you, physically, intellectually, emotionally, and spiritually. Understand how much your LOVE-ing your work is all about you, your values, and your choices in filling your own life with the LOVE which will help you thrive and prosper.

Through Your Eyes:
Your turn. What would you write here? What do you LOVE at the right work in the right business and the right company for you? What is your passion and purpose? What can you be doing which uses all your talents and strengths, so that the fact that someone actually pays you to do it is icing on the cake? I challenge you to write it down so you come to some clarity with it. Not for me, for you. Then go get it. Ho‘o, as we say in Hawai‘i, make it happen.

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A last important point: The word is emphatically LOVE, not like. Like is not good enough. Your life is worth much more than that. Your life is worth LOVE.

My LOVE and aloha to you, Rosa

Articles referenced here:
5 Things Employees Need to Learn—From You
The 10 Beliefs of Great Managers

Rosa Say is the author of Managing with Aloha, Bringing Hawaii’s Universal Values to the Art of Business and the Talking Story blog. She is also the founder and head coach of Say Leadership Coaching, a company dedicated to bringing nobility to the working arts of management and leadership.

Rosa’s Previous Thursday Column was: Gracious, Genuine Greetings.

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 March 13, 2019

How to Get out of a Rut: 12 Useful Ways to Get Unstuck

How to Get out of a Rut: 12 Useful Ways to Get Unstuck

Have you gotten into a rut before? Or are you in a rut right now?

You know you’re in a rut when you run out of ideas and inspiration. I personally see a rut as a productivity vacuum. It might very well be a reason why you aren’t getting results. Even as you spend more time on your work, you can’t seem to get anything constructive done. While I’m normally productive, I get into occasional ruts (especially when I’ve been working back-to-back without rest). During those times, I can spend an entire day in front of the computer and get nothing done. It can be quite frustrating.

Over time, I have tried and found several methods that are helpful to pull me out of a rut. If you experience ruts too, whether as a working professional, a writer, a blogger, a student or other work, you will find these useful. Here are 12 of my personal tips to get out of ruts:

1. Work on the small tasks.

When you are in a rut, tackle it by starting small. Clear away your smaller tasks which have been piling up. Reply to your emails, organize your documents, declutter your work space, and reply to private messages.

Whenever I finish doing that, I generate a positive momentum which I bring forward to my work.

2. Take a break from your work desk.

Get yourself away from your desk and go take a walk. Go to the washroom, walk around the office, go out and get a snack.

Your mind is too bogged down and needs some airing. Sometimes I get new ideas right after I walk away from my computer.

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3. Upgrade yourself

Take the down time to upgrade yourself. Go to a seminar. Read up on new materials (#7). Pick up a new language. Or any of the 42 ways here to improve yourself.

The modern computer uses different typefaces because Steve Jobs dropped in on a calligraphy class back in college. How’s that for inspiration?

4. Talk to a friend.

Talk to someone and get your mind off work for a while.

Talk about anything, from casual chatting to a deep conversation about something you really care about. You will be surprised at how the short encounter can be rejuvenating in its own way.

5. Forget about trying to be perfect.

If you are in a rut, the last thing you want to do is step on your own toes with perfectionist tendencies.

Just start small. Do what you can, at your own pace. Let yourself make mistakes.

Soon, a little trickle of inspiration will come. And then it’ll build up with more trickles. Before you know it, you have a whole stream of ideas.

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6. Paint a vision to work towards.

If you are continuously getting in a rut with your work, maybe there’s no vision inspiring you to move forward.

Think about why you are doing this, and what you are doing it for. What is the end vision in mind?

Make it as vivid as possible. Make sure it’s a vision that inspires you and use that to trigger you to action.

7. Read a book (or blog).

The things we read are like food to our brain. If you are out of ideas, it’s time to feed your brain with great materials.

Here’s a list of 40 books you can start off with. Stock your browser with only the feeds of high quality blogs, such as Lifehack.org, DumbLittleMan, Seth Godin’s Blog, Tim Ferris’ Blog, Zen Habits or The Personal Excellence Blog.

Check out the best selling books; those are generally packed with great wisdom.

8. Have a quick nap.

If you are at home, take a quick nap for about 20-30 minutes. This clears up your mind and gives you a quick boost. Nothing quite like starting off on a fresh start after catching up on sleep.

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9. Remember why you are doing this.

Sometimes we lose sight of why we do what we do, and after a while we become jaded. A quick refresher on why you even started on this project will help.

What were you thinking when you thought of doing this? Retrace your thoughts back to that moment. Recall why you are doing this. Then reconnect with your muse.

10. Find some competition.

Nothing quite like healthy competition to spur us forward. If you are out of ideas, then check up on what people are doing in your space.

Colleagues at work, competitors in the industry, competitors’ products and websites, networking conventions.. you get the drill.

11. Go exercise.

Since you are not making headway at work, might as well spend the time shaping yourself up.

Sometimes we work so much that we neglect our health and fitness. Go jog, swim, cycle, whichever exercise you prefer.

As you improve your physical health, your mental health will improve, too. The different facets of ourselves are all interlinked.

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Here’re 15 Tips to Restart the Exercise Habit (and How to Keep It).

12. Take a good break.

Ruts are usually signs that you have been working too long and too hard. It’s time to get a break.

Beyond the quick tips above, arrange for a 1-day or 2-days of break from your work. Don’t check your (work) emails or do anything work-related. Relax and do your favorite activities. You will return to your work recharged and ready to start.

Contrary to popular belief, the world will not end from taking a break from your work. In fact, you will be much more ready to make an impact after proper rest. My best ideas and inspiration always hit me whenever I’m away from my work.

Take a look at this to learn the importance of rest: The Importance of Scheduling Downtime

More Resources About Getting out of a Rut

Featured photo credit: Joshua Earle via unsplash.com

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