It recently dawned on me that most people don’t work happy. Work makes us unhappy. Something like 90 percent of the time, people are either miserable at work or dreading the next time they will go to work.
I remember those late teenage years when I first realized that being an adult is really really hard, and you have to figure out most of it on your own. When you think about it, it’s kind of weird that they don’t teach us more basic life skills in school.
- dealing with taxes
- job interviews
- renting an apartment
Work is one of the biggest things that we adults struggle with. At work, we need to have lots of energy, remember a million different things and stay creative at the same time.
Work can be tough. Yet it’s something that we have to spend considerable amounts of time and energy on, and so we might as well be happy when we are doing it.
There are some tips and tricks I’ve learned over time that have made me more productive and that have taught me how to work happy.
If you want to get more done and feel awesome while you’re doing it, then just keep reading.
“The only way to do great work is to love what you do.”
1. BEGINNING IS WINNING
Have you seen that hilarious Ted Talk on procrastination? You should watch it. It has some interesting explanations for how and why people procrastinate so much.
My theory is simple. Getting started is like a scary, mythical monster you have to fight, so summon all your energy and willpower for that moment. Waiting doesn’t make it easier. Once you’ve started, you feel mad at yourself for being so silly, and once again you realize that it’s never as hard as it seems.
2. ASK SOMEONE FOR HELP
The one thing that I struggle with most, that I seem to need to keep learning time and time again, is that when I have a problem, I shouldn’t struggle alone. Asking for help is hard. There is a stereotype that men are the worst at this, and maybe it’s true sometimes. But I find that we women also struggle.
We’ve been raised to be “good girls”; strong, self-reliant and responsible people that can do it by themselves. We don’t want to bother anyone. We think the question must be stupid, so it’s best to keep it to ourselves. But here’s the thing: problems are often solved within 2 minutes when you just ask someone.
3. TIME BLOCK YOUR DAY
The worst outlook you can have when starting work is seeing it as a dreary, never-ending day. Instead, break work up into blocks.
Plan ahead what you want to get done and when; even plan your breaks, so you always have something to look forward to. Create a day that motivates and inspires you. It doesn’t have to be a schedule that outlines every minute of the next eight hours, but it needs to be specific enough to give you focus.
Now, I’m not gonna lie – I don’t always plan out my days, even when I know I should. It can feel like a chore. But when I take 10 minutes to get a plan done it’s always worth it, as it enables me to focus on one task at a time.
4. GET HEALTHY (this is so important)
The weird thing I’ve discovered about work is that if you want to work happy, you should focus on what you do when you’re not working. That is, what you do before, after and in between.
Take plenty of breaks, take more than you think you need. Go for a walk outside when you can. Go to bed 30 minutes earlier. Do stuff in your free time that’s both good for you and that makes you happy.
It matters if you’re tired. It matters if you feel bloated and have back pain. How can you get stuff done if you don’t take care of yourself?
I hope you find these tips and tricks useful. At the end of the day, learning to work happy isn’t as complicated as we make it.