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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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Last Updated on July 10, 2020

Feeling Stuck in Your Career? How to Break Free and Get Ahead

Feeling Stuck in Your Career? How to Break Free and Get Ahead

Have you ever caught yourself in a daydream where you’ve gone for that upcoming promotion, and you’re now the boss at work? Or how about the one where you’ve summoned up all your courage to quit a job where you’re feeling stuck in your career and live your dream instead? Or when you’ve changed career paths to do what really makes you happy?

Then, you snapped back to reality and realized that you’re not the boss, not living your dream, and not even happy in the career path that you’re on.

Over the years I’ve worked with hundreds of individuals who’ve told me they feel stuck in their careers, that something had to change for them to break free and be happy, but they lacked the confidence to take that step. My mission is to make sure that nobody feels stuck in their career because of a momentary lapse in bravery that’s dragged on for too long.

Read on to find out how you can stop feeling stuck in your career, break free, and get ahead at work. .

Here are my top ten tips for becoming unstuck in your career.

1. Make Time for You

If you’re feeling stuck, frustrated, or unhappy with how your career is panning out, the first step is to work out why.

Maybe you’ve arrived in your current career by accident and haven’t ever made time to deliberately think or plan what you’d love to do and how you’d get there.

Prioritizing time to think is the first step you need to take to stop feeling stuck and start getting ahead. Book some time into your day where you can have an uninterrupted meeting with yourself. This is your thinking time.

Work out what makes you happy at work, what doesn’t, and where you might want to go. Decide on the steps you want to take to progress your career in the direction that you want it to take.

For example, are there training days, evening courses, or online learning that you can do? Have you considered getting a mentor to help you get ahead?

By booking in a meeting with yourself, it signals it’s important (to you and your colleagues) and also stops others spotting a gap in your day and filling it with a meeting.

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2. Grow Your Network Before You Need It

Who you know is more important than what you know for career progression. Don’t wait until you’re feeling stuck in your career to start expanding your networks. Do it now.

Adam Grant, the author of Give and Take, says you’re 58% more likely to get a new job through your weak ties than through your strong ones. Your strong ties are those in your immediate circle whom you interact with often. Your weak ties are your friends of friends. They move in different circles to you, they know different people, make different connections, and are more likely to introduce you to new and different opportunities[1].

When I was thinking about setting up my current company, Lucidity, I turned up to every networking event. I drank a lot of coffees with a lot of different people to understand what they did, to ask for advice, to unpick what their problems were, and to look for opportunities for collaboration and connections.

It paid off because, when I launched my business, I let my network know how I could help them, and soon I had my first clients.

Pay attention to building and nurturing your networks and focus on how you can add value to other. That’s where your next career opportunity is most likely to come from.

3. Surround Yourself With People Who Inspire You

According to Tim Ferriss, “You are the average of the five people you most associate with,” and his associations with different people ebbs and flows depending on what he’s working on and trying to achieve[2].

For example, if you are trying to be fitter, it’s easier if you hang around with people who love doing exercise–they help you to up your game.

If you want that promotion, a career change, or to set up your own business, seek out people who are excelling at it already. They’ll have valuable things to teach you about breaking free and getting ahead.

4. Work on Your Personal Brand

Jeff Bezos defines a personal brand as “what people say about you when you’re not in the room.” People will talk about you when you are not in the room anyway, so you might as well be deliberate about what you’d like people to say!

Your personal brand isn’t about pretending to be something you’re not. That can actually keep you feeling stuck in your career. It’s really about being your best “real you.” It’s about owning your strengths and being purposeful about how you want to be perceived by others.

What do you want to be known for? By being more deliberate about how you want to come across and what you’re looking for in your career, you’ll increase your chance of attracting the right opportunities.

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Once you’ve given your personal brand some thought, make sure that you show up online. Is your LinkedIn profile up to date? And if you don’t have one, get one. Make sure it communicates what you want to be known for and that it’s consistent with your other social media profiles.

Try these 5 Steps to Master Networking Skills and Perfect Your Personal Branding.

5. Be Accountable

Achieve your career goals faster, and grow and learn by making yourself accountable. Tell other people your goals and a timeline. and have them to hold you accountable.

For example, you might want to get a promotion by the end of the year, have decided the sector you want to move to by the end of the month, or have got your new business idea before the next pay day. Whatever your ambitions are, you can tell a friend or a colleague, or share this with a mentor or a mastermind group.

When we tell other people our goals and intentions, they hold us accountable, and we are more likely to make progress faster.

6. Make Sure Your Values Are Aligned With Your Company’s

All the professional development, goal setting, and networks in the world won’t make you happy if you’re working for a company that ultimately has opposing values to yours.

Figure out what’s important to you in a job. For example, does your company’s product help people live a better life? Do you feel strongly about your company’s ethics and social responsibility? Does the company culture allows employees to be themselves and shine? Or maybe flexible working and more holidays for employees with families is where your heart is?

Some companies put their employees well-being at the core of their business; others put profits first. If you feel that your values don’t match the core values of your employer, it could be a reason why you’re feeling stuck in your career and unhappy.

It’s important to work through this and identify whether it’s the job that is not right for you, or if it’s a great job but the organization or sector is wrong for you.

7. Get out of Your Comfort Zone

Your comfort zone is your safe place. For any change to happen, you have to step out of your comfort zone.

It’s actually much easier not to change anything and to keep grumbling on about how you’re stuck and unhappy in your career than to step outside of your comfort zone to address the fearful unknowns associated with change. It’s part of human nature that we’d put up with the devil we know rather than risk the devil we don’t.

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This is true even if the devil we know is a boring, unfulfilling job because we’re wired to think that making a change to find a better option might actually leave us worse off.

If you feel stuck, it might be that your confidence has got the better of you.

To get ahead at work, start taking small steps outside of your comfort zone. Consider what you’re scared of that is stopping you from making a change. Then, tackle that in small steps.

For example, if you know that to move into the job you want, you’ll have to do more public speaking, but public speaking terrifies you so much it’s stopping you from going for the job, then start small to build your confidence. You can speak up more in team meetings, then slowly build from there.

You might also choose to set up or be part of a specific group. One of my clients, who found that confidence was holding her team back in achieving work goals, set up a “get out of your comfort zone club,” where they challenge and support each other to build their confidence by regularly leaving their comfort zones.

8. Learn to Embrace Failure

Failure is part of life. A New York University study found that children learning to walk averaged 2,368 steps and fell 17 times an hour[3]. Failure is simply the natural path to success.

The truth is that we don’t get everything right the first time. We fail, we learn, we pick ourselves up, and we try again.

In my experience, it’s common that whilst the theory of learning from failure is supported, the reality of being open about failures to enable personal learning is much harder to achieve.

We don’t like to admit that we’ve failed. We have a fight or flight response to failure. It’s a normal gut reaction to ask ourselves: “Will I get away with it if I don’t tell anyone?” We are fearful of criticism, of losing face in front of others, or even being fired for failure.

However, if you’re going to stop feeling stuck in your career, you must be open to learning from failure.

Reframe failure by viewing everything as an experiment because you can’t have a failed experiment—you just learn whether something works or not. Think of Edison inventing the lightbulb, when he said:

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“I’ve not failed. I’ve just found 10,000 ways that won’t work.”

9. Build Your Resilience

Resilience is the ability to tackle difficulties and setbacks, to bounce back, regroup, and to keep going.

Getting unstuck in your career, taking a different path, and achieving the results you want will take resilience. Having resilience is also the capacity to choose how you respond to the unexpected things that life throws your way and adapt and thrive in times of complex change.

Given that the world we live in is in constant flux, and the only thing that is certain is uncertainty, the ability to adapt and bounce back is an important life skill, as well as a career skill.

In her book Grit: The Power of Passion and Perseverance, Angela Duckworth’s research shows that when measuring success, the ability to persevere beats talent every time.

Learn more about how to build resilience in this guide: What Is Resilience and How to Always Be Resilient (Step-By-Step Guide)

10. Ask for Help

It can be hard to ask for help, as it can make us feel vulnerable.

No one person can be expected to have all the answers. That’s why we need a group of people that we can go to for help, people who can pick us up when we have setbacks and also help us to celebrate success.

My advice is to be deliberate about creating your group. You can do that with a tool called a “Me Map”:

  1. Write down all the things that you might need support with, like help with career progression, interview practice, making new connections, talking through business plans, learning from failure, etc.
  2. Next to each thing, write the names of the people you go to when you need that particular thing.
  3. Make sure you get in touch and regularly connect with them.

Final Thoughts

You can stop feeling stuck in your career, break free, and get ahead at work by applying the tips in this article. Start small by incorporating three new things in your first week, and then adding more as your comfort zone and capacity expands.

Remember, no matter how stuck you feel, it’s never too late to make a change and land the career that you truly want.

More Tips to Stop Feeling Stuck in Your Career

Featured photo credit: NEW DATA SERVICES via unsplash.com

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