Your job is one of the major relationships in your life. After all, we spend about a third of our time there, so why not take a moment to rekindle the romance.
This Valentines Day, let’s do something for the job (it’s always been there for us).
Here are 12 ways to fuel the fire…
1. Get your game face on
On the way to your workplace, think of how the work you have allows you to have your life outside of it, such as a great social life. A positive attitude will make the day more pleasant and productive.
2. Keep work in perspective
You can only do the best you can in each situation. Look beyond yourself and your work, and consider the bigger picture. Stop and ‘smell the roses’ both within and outside the work environment.
3. You are more than your work
Give up the notion that your working life ‘should’ be a certain way. Such expectations of what you were supposed to be, as set by your parents and teachers, can stop you from enjoying what you currently do.
4. Plan your time and create a to-do list
Keep in mind long term projects as well as the more imminent things that need doing. Estimate how long each task will take and then assess whether what you hope to get done is realistic. I like to start the day with ‘three key things that, if completed, would make today great.’
5. Concentrate on the task at hand
Do not let yourself be distracted by worrying about all the other things to be done or losing energy over the undesirable situation you find yourself in. Stay in the moment. Be ruthless and stay on a task.
6. Be clear about what’s expected of you
Clarify immediately, any time you are not sure or where you are faced with conflicting demands. The more clear and upfront you are with your manager and the other people you work with, the better it will be for you in the long term.
7. Delegate wherever appropriate
Decide if there is anything that can be delegated, or that more fairly belongs to someone else’s work load. Do it, dump it, defer it or delegate it – avoid handling a piece of paper (or an email) twice.
8. Have regular breaks
If you’re in an admin role, get away from your normal workplace even if only for five minutes. Try taking a break from the laptop, emails and do leave the mobile behind. Make sure that you do have that lunch break – it is not just for food but also for fresh air and a mental break. You might also like to try one of the many ‘Pomodoro’ apps out there.
9. Learn to relax
No matter how challenging the work gets or how demanding your bosses become, at the end of the day it is only a job and you are much more than that. In years to come, you will look back and wonder what the fuss was.
10. Make your workplace more pleasant
Contribute towards creating a pleasant work environment. Do not gossip in the office as it just creates negativity all around. Do not listen to any gossip either. Laugh more and stress less.
11. Review your day before you leave for home
Take a moment to look at what worked well, and what could be improved the next day. If you feel satisfied with the day’s work, then why not reward yourself later that day. You deserve it.
12. Switch off once you leave work
You are already at work a third of your time, so do not continue to keep it buzzing in your head during your free time. Mentally say good bye to your work space and enjoy the time at home.
Your relationship with your job is as involved as any other. And like all relationships, small efforts can deliver big rewards.