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8 Surprising Secrets To Developing A Killer Attitude

8 Surprising Secrets To Developing A Killer Attitude

Having the right attitude at work is essential. Why? Because, we spend a large portion of our waking hours at work, and being happy at work is essential to a happy life overall. Develop a great attitude, and you’ll achieve your goals at work and enjoy true job satisfaction.

Here are 8 ways to change your attitude and to achieve just about anything you put your mind to.

1. Ask yourself each morning whether the way you plan to spend your day is how you would spend it if this was the last day of your life.

In his Stanford address, Steve Jobs shared some incredible insights with the Stanford graduates.

Steve explains how he looks in the mirror each morning, and ask himself this question:

“If this was the last day of my life, would I want to do what I’m about to do today?”

And, if the answer is no for too many days in a row then he will seriously consider re-evaluating his goals.

By asking yourself this question, you too can bring your focus in line with goals that really matter to you. The rest of your daily routines will pale into insignificance. But the goals which make the center of you attention will be connected to your deepest values. Your attitude to these remaining goals will rival the attitudes of the great minds.

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2. Visit the Steve Jobs School of Attitude

In the same Stanford address, Steve jobs said:

“Your work is going to fill a large part of your life, and the only way to be truly satisfied is to do what you believe is great work.”

And great work he did! Not only did he bring his A-game to work every day, he inspired hundreds of people to achieve things with technology, that they never believed possible. Even after being fired as CEO, Jobs persisted, and eventually prevailed.

Rather than to spend much time brooding over the fact that he had been sacked as CEO of Apple, he used an incredibly positive attitude to build another company called NeXT. This eventually led to him resuming his role at the head of the Apple boardroom.

3. Get Rid of Your Attitude of Entitlement

Multimedia advertising has us brainwashed into believing that happiness comes from getting that latest smartphone, or that flashy car. Not only that, we can acquire these things with the click of a button! Things have never been so easily accessible, and this has created an attitude of entitlement.

Guess what? This attitude spills into the workplace. The end result? You stop growing. You stagnate. And evolution has taught us that a lack of growth equals death!

To really achieve true greatness you need to have pretty much the opposite attitude. You need to ask yourself what you can give to a situation, rather than look to see what you can get from it.

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Approach each situation looking to see what value you can add to it. You’ll be amazed with your success and blown away by the impact it has on your attitude.

4. Train Your Mind Not To Expect Immediate Gratification

The information age hasn’t come without strings attached. Want that latest album by Coldplay? Download it now! Want the latest book by Stephen King? Grab it on Kindle now! Want a new pair of Shoes? It’s just a few clicks away on eBay.

Technology has trained us to expect immediate gratification.

But here’s the rub: If you want to achieve anything of real significance, you need to be patient. It’s not something that happens overnight. You’ve got to work at it every day for a long period of time. That’s how you kick the big goals.

The key to greatness is being able to delay gratification. It’s about delaying immediate gratification, and putting in structured and sustained effort over time, which leads to achieving great things.

5. Don’t Give Yourself Too Much Time to Complete Tasks

That sounds counterintuitive, I know. But the truth is, the scope of a project often expands to accommodate the timeframe you allocate to it.

The reverse is also true. If you set yourself challenging timeframes you are more likely to approach the task with a sense of urgency. Once you’ve developed momentum you’ll be well on your way to astonishing success.

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And success can do wonders for your attitude. After all, success begets success.

You want to create a sense of urgency? Set yourself strict (but achievable) timeframes and do your best to meet them. You’ll work hard and play harder!

6. Get Really Clear On Your “Why”.

In this excellent TED Talk, Simon Sinek talks about the importance of understanding our why.

He uses Apple as an example of a company that really is in touch with its “why”. In his speech Simon explains how Apple (and any very successful person or organization) effectively communicates their “Why”. 

Apple challenges the status quo and thinks differently. This is Apple’s “Why”. The fact that Apple happens to achieve this by creating incredibly simple products that are easy to use is secondary.

People connect with Apple’s beliefs through their products. When people buy Apple products they’re not just buying those products, they are buying into Apple’s belief system.

Coming to terms with your “why” connects you with your core values. It puts you in touch with your deepest motivations. If you can make a clear connection between your deepest heartfelt values and the work you do every day, you will be unstoppable.

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7. Set S.M.A.R.T. Goals.

Smart is an acronym for specific, measurable, achievable, realistic and timely. Having high-level goals is great. It sets the direction for the coming months and years of your life.

But that’s not enough. If you have goals that stretch into the distant future you’ll lack motivation to achieve them. Feedback needs to be far more frequent and far more immediate. Break your goals down to monthly, weekly, daily and hourly targets. You can do this in an Excel spreadsheet or a Word document.

8. Ask Yourself : Are There Any Underlying Assumptions Preventing Me From Having The Right Attitude?

Often we have underlying assumptions or notions that prevent us from giving it 100%.

For instance you might hold the idea that rich people are necessarily corrupt or unethical.  If success in your part usually means greater amounts of wealth, this might prevent you from being successful.

In these situations it is very useful to examine your notions and the underlying assumptions. Write down your assumptions. And then spend some time examining them. Question those assumptions that are stopping you from giving your work 100%.

Ultimately, it’s important to realize that Steve Jobs was still a human being. He achieved great things, but that had a lot to do with his incredible attitude.

If you want to achieve true greatness, apply these eight secrets. You’ll be amazed by the results.

Featured photo credit: Strong woman lifting barbell as a part of crossfit exercise routine. Fit young woman lifting heavy weights at gym. via shutterstock.com

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Published on January 7, 2021

How To Train Yourself When You Lack Attention To Details

How To Train Yourself When You Lack Attention To Details

Some people see the trees for the forest, and some see only the forest, meaning they lack strong attention to detail. But even if you’re one of the people who take a macro rather than a micro view, true professionalism requires balancing both.

If focusing on the fine points is not your forte, you will benefit from training yourself to pay attention to details. You will profit by saving yourself time, effort, money, and credibility.

Why Training Yourself in Attention to Details Pays Off

You add value to your organization when you make the effort to ensure that you performed your work thoroughly and effectively. This is why job postings often list “attention to details” among the required skills.

When you present your supervisor or client with well-completed, high-quality work the first time, it maximizes your value and minimizes wasted time. Detail-oriented people are also more adept at catching mistakes that could lead to costly blunders.

Moreover, attention to detail is an indicator of possessing other in-demand employee qualities, such as organization, thoroughness, and focus. In some professions, such as accounting, engineering, medical research, and more, you can only excel if you have trained yourself to pay attention to details.

In other professions, possessing strong attention to detail is the very quality that will get you promoted to a position where you will be asked to consider the big picture.

Finally, if you are the “go-to” details person, everyone else on the team can relax a bit. They know the project is in good hands and will likely throw you more projects as a reward. This will ultimately lead to your advancement.

3 Important Aspects of Becoming More Detail-Oriented

Here are the 3 important things you need to learn if you want to remedy your lack of attention to detail:

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  1. Respect deadlines
  2. Understand the work-flow plan
  3. Build in time to mess up

1. Respect Deadlines

Deadlines lend all projects a finish line. One smart idea is to take the given deadline and work backward from it, calculating when your piece of the project is due. Then, if you stick to the proscribed schedule for completing the mini-projects that you have, you will never miss a deadline.

One important note on this: It is smarter to stick to the deadline and turn in work that merits a “B+” than to blow the deadline with “A” work. Chances are, through revision and suggested changes from others on the team, you can bring up your B+ work to an A later. But if you disregard deadlines, you will lose the respect of your boss and fellow teammates.

2. Understand the Work-Flow Plan

Your team is developing work in conjunction with other teams who have projects and deadlines of their own. When you grasp the whole work-flow plan, you may be able to either add insight to the greater project or to your own smaller piece of it that others at the firm will consider valuable.

3. Build in Time to Mess Up

You can expect that “what can go wrong will go wrong.” Don’t overpromise on deadlines. Something likely will mess up, but when it does if you built in the time to fix it, those around you won’t freak out.

Chances are, you already give your attention to several details. Take heart. You can do this! You can overcome your lack of attention to detail and become more detail-oriented.

For starters, consider this: Most people take the time and put in extra effort into the activities or undertakings that matter to them most. Training yourself to become more detail-oriented can mean adopting a similar pattern of behavior.

Apply the same attention you give to your appearance. Are you a meticulous dresser? Do you pay attention to how you pair patterns and colors, and how you accessorize a particular outfit?

This is the same system to use when you lack attention to detail with your work. Give every item careful consideration so that each one contributes to the perfectly pieced-together whole.

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Assemble the ingredients the way you do when you cook. Cooking and baking from scratch require close attention to details as you measure and add each ingredient in sequence, and you time everything so that the meal comes together at the same time.

Similarly, your work product requires you to gauge whether all the ingredients have been added and that your final product is delivered on time.

Organize your business network like you do your social contacts. If you follow a broad base of friends and acquaintances on social media, you can apply similar skills to stay up-to-date on details associated with business acquaintances.

When you meet somebody who could be influential to your career or a resource for improving your skills, follow that person on social media. Respond to their posts to keep the lines of communication flowing.

12 Tips to Help You if You Lack Attention to Detail

Teaching yourself to take note of important details involves sharpening your perceptions and thinking ahead. The following tips will help you adopt these practices. Master these habits when training yourself to become detail-oriented.

1. Learn to Listen Well

You will pick up relevant information and needed nuance when you apply the skills of active listening. In conversations, train yourself to make eye contact, give your undivided attention to the speaker, and ask pertinent follow-up questions.

Training yourself to pay better attention to details in conversations includes learning to fully concentrate on what others have to say. If you find it hard, there’s no harm in taking notes on what they say.

2. Pay Attention to Social Cues

Make a point of noticing body language and facial expressions that provide insights into how others perceive a situation. Social cues offer details that give you an understanding of how words and actions impact others. The infamous character Michael Scott of the television show “The Office” epitomizes the consequences of not paying attention to others’ body language.[1]

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3. Follow Rules

Rules and protocols usually come about from lessons learned and are put in place to avoid further mishaps—whether from a safety or efficiency standpoint. If you’re given step-by-step procedures to follow, check them off as you go. Also, return to the rules at the project’s end just to make sure you adhered to them all.

4. Take Notes

Note-taking is a way to boost your retention and gives you something to refer back to when you need to keep track of pertinent details. You will also heighten your focus as you listen for relevant information. Review your notes shortly after the meeting or conversation and highlight the content that you intend to apply.

5. Prioritize What Needs Your Attention Now

When you have a full slate of work that demands your attention, take a few moments to sort assignments from most to least urgent. Keep a calendar, spreadsheet, or project planning software up-to-date with schedules and deadlines to help you stay organized.

As you tackle each urgent assignment, give it your full attention so no details are missed. Give yourself ample time—especially if you tend to be someone who waits until the last minute—as rushing can make you overlook important details.

6. Have a Detail-Oriented Assistant Check Your Work

If you lack attention to detail, then it makes sense to seek help from someone detail-oriented. If you have this option, take advantage of it. Two sets of eyes are better than one. Just be sure to credit your assistant for their help once the project is completed.

7. Learn the Rules of Writing Well

English is a difficult language, and grammar, punctuation, and spelling can all sabotage you unless you pay attention to detail. When in doubt, look it up. Free to use website services such as Grammarly can help.

8. Proofread Before You Hit Send

Nothing is perfect in its first draft. If you lack attention to detail, then put in the extra effort before submitting things. Before you send off any written work, check carefully not only for misspellings and incomplete sentences but also for improper tone, inappropriate colloquialisms, and inconsistent formatting. When your written communications are error-free, they will have their intended impact.

9. Minimize Distractions

It is impossible to stay focused when colleagues carry on conversations nearby or your mobile notifications ding you throughout the day. Do your best to limit distractions.

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If you are working where there is a lot of noise or side activity, try wearing noise-canceling headphones or seeking out a quiet corner. Disable your notifications when you need to focus, and resolve to only check them after you have completed your assignment.

10. Take Breaks

It may sound counter-intuitive to stop and take a walk, but it’s necessary. Walk away from the screen. Moving from one task to the next across the span of your workday is a recipe for brain fatigue. Give your brain a recess time when you come to a natural stopping place or after you complete one project and before you start the next. These short pauses are necessary for sorting through all the details needed for coming up with successful solutions.

11. Make Time for Reflection

At the end of a workday, take a few minutes to go over the day’s events in your mind. What was said or relayed in conversations? What is the status of the projects you worked on? What else occurred that you should pay attention to? Could there have been any details you might have missed that you should address tomorrow?

12. Keep a Detailed To-Do List

This simple organizational tool is your best ally for getting your work done on time and for paying attention to the details. If you are pressed for time (and who isn’t?), write your list to coordinate with dayparts.

Allot a certain number of hours to complete each task, do it, and then check it off. Nothing feels more rewarding than completing all the tasks on your list. But if you can’t finish them, then carry them over to the following day.

Final Thoughts

Details may seem small, but they can become a lot larger when they are overlooked. If you know you lack attention to detail, commit to training yourself to embrace the many facets that can help you consistently excel in the tasks you set out to accomplish.

When you begin to catch your mistakes in advance or apply the tidbits of information you gathered from paying close attention, you will know that you have trained yourself in the fundamentals of becoming detail-oriented. After that, you should start hearing the phrase “Great job!” more often.

More Tips on Boosting Your Attention to Detail

Featured photo credit: Cristina Gottardi via unsplash.com

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