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Make Your Job More Enjoyable in 7 Easy Steps

Make Your Job More Enjoyable in 7 Easy Steps

Did you know that if you work a full-time job for 50 years, you’ll punch the time clock for roughly 4,333 hours over the course of your life? That’s more than 10% of your life if you live to age 80. While every job you have may not be the dream job you imagined yourself doing as a child, going into work every day with a positive attitude makes the time go by much faster. Showing that you can embrace even tough jobs with zeal and enthusiasm can help you move up the career ladder faster.  Bosses love to see someone with a can-do attitude who takes initiative. Make your job enjoyable and you may even find yourself looking forward to the sound of your alarm clock each morning.

Challenge yourself to reach new levels

No matter where you are, there is always room for improvement. If you’re an employee, challenge yourself to move up the corporate ladder in a given amount of time. Give yourself a deadline, and then investigate what you need to do to reach it. If you’re upper management, challenge yourself to take the business to a whole new level.

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Get involved in a project that inspires passion in you

You can make your job more enjoyable by embarking on a passion project. For example, if you’re passionate about the environment, start a project to convince all your coworkers to use reusable coffee mugs. By using your job to make a difference in a cause that matters to you, you’ll actually look forward to going to work every day. Just make sure your passion project doesn’t violate company standards. If you work in a factory that produces paper coffee mugs, your reusable coffee mug project may not go over so well.

Commit random acts of kindness

Doing something nice for those you work for or with can go a long way to boosting your own job enjoyment. Buy a cup of coffee for the guy in the cubicle next to you. Bring in a cake for your favorite client’s birthday. Kindness is contagious. When everyone is smiling, your work will be more enjoyable.

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Start your day with laughter

Going in to work with a grumpy attitude will make the day drag by. Make your job enjoyable by getting yourself in the right mood before starting the day. Spend a few minutes on your favorite humor site when you wake up, watch a funny sitcom while you’re getting ready, or even just share a joke with your neighbor on the train.

Form bonds with coworkers

You can make your job enjoyable by making friends at work. You’re all in the same proverbial boat, more or less. You don’t have to become best friends with everyone at your job. Find something you have in common with your coworkers and use it to create a connection. It can be anything from kids in the same school to a distaste for the coffee in the break room.

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Participate in job functions

In grade school, kids get points for class participation. While you won’t earn shiny little stars for participating in job functions, you will earn a little notice from the higher-ups. Even better, you’ll make friends and memories with your coworkers, which really helps make your job more enjoyable. You don’t have to show up to every office holiday and birthday party, just make an effort to put in an appearance at a few each year.

Leave the job behind at the end of the day

Perhaps the most important thing you can do to make your job enjoyable is leaving it behind when you punch out for the day. Go home and relax. Spend time with family and friends. Even if you dealt with the worst client of your career that day, leave it at the office. Anyone can get through a shift if they know it eventually ends.

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Remember, attitude is everything when it comes to making your job enjoyable. Focus on the positive aspects of your position and the negative won’t seem so dreary.

Featured photo credit: Alex France via flickr.com

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5 Powerful Ideas on How to Be Productive at Work

5 Powerful Ideas on How to Be Productive at Work

Not being able to stay productive at work is a problem that everyone runs into at some point; no matter how much you like your job, there are certain factors that prevent you from staying at maximum proficiency throughout the whole day.

A lack of productive focus at work can lead to extra stress on yourself, missed deadlines, passed opportunities, raise denial, demotion and even termination.

So, if you are someone who has trouble with your productivity, here are five effective tips on how to be productive at work:

1. Take breaks

First and foremost, it’s important for you to take regular breaks. Trying to work throughout the whole day will tire your brain, which will then cause you to doze off and think about something else.

If you keep working your brain, it will fill up and get jumbled with information—sort of like a computer hard drive. Taking a break would be like resetting your computer so that it can start afresh, or de-fragmenting the data so that all the information is in order.

This is a great thing because it allows you to solve problems you were unable to solve previously, by seeing it differently; if you are able to organize your thoughts properly, you will be able to take in new information more easily.

There have even been studies about methods of saving time and staying proficient, and taking breaks is one of the leading factors.

According to Christine Hohlbaum, the author of The Power of Slow: 101 Ways to Save Time in Our 24/7 World, eating lunch away from your work area every day will greatly increase your productivity. Eating in your work area will give you the illusion that you are working, but whether you like it or not, your brain will begin to wander and think of something else and then you will be working tirelessly with no progress.

It’s important to take breaks before and during work too: if you come to work in a rush because you woke up late, your mind will not be mentally prepared for the day ahead, and you will spend the first 10 to 15 minutes trying to get organized and composed before you can actually start working.

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Instead, you should try to wake up 20 minutes earlier than the time it would take you to “just get” to work. Take that time to stare off into space and not worry about anything.

If you do this, your brain will be empty and ready for all the challenges it has coming for the next few hours.

If your employer only allows a set amount of breaks during the workday, that doesn’t mean you can’t just get up and walk around for a quick break every now and then.

Even if it’s only 5 minutes, it will refresh your brain and you will gain renewed energy to do your job.

Learn more about The Importance of Scheduling Downtime.

2. Pace yourself and balance your workload

One problem that most people run into is that they underestimate the amount of work they have to do, and end up doing 50% of the work in the last 20% of the time they have to do it. This is due to an issue of balancing one’s workload.

When you receive a project, or are doing a job you normally do, take some time to really plan out your work schedule.

Consider how much time it took you to do this last time; determine how you can break the project into smaller parts and which can only be accomplished on certain days, and whether anything might come up that could interfere with your plan.

All of these questions are important for starting on a project, and when answered, they will help you stay productive throughout each day.

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For example, if you needed to design a project to map out the amount of aid offered in various regions after Hurricane Sandy, you can break it up as follows:

You will need to know what organizations are offering help to begin with, how much aid those organizations gave or plan to give, which regions were hit by Sandy, and which regions suffered the greatest losses.

You start this project on a Thursday and know you have until Tuesday to gather this information.

In order to stay productive, you need to plan out your work week—now you know you can find out which organizations are involved in helping the Hurricane Sandy Victims any day since that information is online, but gathering information on the organizations may require you to call them.

Since phone calls can only be done during week days, you have to plan on gathering all of that information before the weekend comes.

That is just one example of a situation in which pre-planning your project will help you stay productive; had you researched the affected regions first, you would not have received the info on the organizations until the weekend, and may have missed your chance to call them.

That, in turn, would have wasted time you could have spent working on this project to finish it.

Knowing what you need to do, when you can do it, and how long it will take you, is important in balancing your workload and being more productive and efficient.

3. Put your work first

This is an issue that usually occurs with young people who are new to the workforce: they’re often tempted with offers to go out at midday, and then come back lost in thought and unfocused on their work-related tasks.

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While it is important to take breaks, your breaks should consist of you clearing your mind, not loading it up with other less important information—like sports.

However, that is not the only situation where you need to worry about putting your work first before all else.

In a work environment, the senior employees will oftentimes push some of their menial tasks onto the newer employees. If you fall into that category, you need to know that their work is not your work, so if you have tasks that need to be done, you need to do it first.

If you are a new employee, you must learn to say no to other people even when it means you may not be in their good graces anymore. You can help others out once your work is done, but you are paid to do your own work, not anyone else’s.

4. Don’t open your browser unless you need them

In this day and age, everyone is constantly monitoring their social network. This is a major pain point for companies, which is why many don’t allow employees to access their social networks on company workstations.

When you are at work, disconnect the internet from your phone and keep your browsers closed so you’re not tempted to log onto your social media accounts or browse any sites that are not work-related.

If you keep your browsers closed and phone tucked away, only to be used in an emergency, you will find yourself being a more productive employee right away. 

5. Try to be happy and optimistic

If you always have a negative outlook on life, you will be more distracted and less motivated to get work done, so it’s important for you to start your day off right.

This can be done by having a good breakfast or by taking time in the morning to watch one of your favorite TV shows before work.

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If you are happy, you will find yourself able to work much more productively as your mind won’t wander into worrying about something else.

Also, if you stay optimistic and keep telling yourself that you can do whatever you set your mind to, the tasks will seem much less daunting and will go by much more quickly.

Take a look at more effective ways to stay positive at work:

15 Ways To Stay Positive At Work

Happiness and optimism are the keys to being a productive and happy employee.

All in all, heed the five tips above and you will find yourself being one of the most productive people at your company.

While you do not need to master them all, each and every one of them will help you become a better and more efficient employee.

Featured photo credit: Pexels via pexels.com

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