It is a common mantra that “If I work enough hours I will get that promotion. Once that day arrives, I will have time to do the things that make me happy.” The challenge is that day never comes. There is always another project, promotion, or raise in the future. So we work longer and longer hours and miss more and more opportunities to be happy. Which, without us realizing it, is hurting our chances for success.
Take a Time Out. Find ways to be happy and successful.
- Get into Flow – One of our opportunities to be happiest at work is when we are so focused on a project or task that we lose track of time.
- Find a project or activity where you are confident in your abilities but it is still challenging for you.
- Turn off all distractions – e-mail reminders, texts, instant messages, and other interruptions.
- Work for 90 minutes without interruption and see how much you can get done.
- Then take 15 minutes to walk around and re-energize.
The key is to not work for 10 hours straight with 12 distractions per hour. You leave work feeling tired without feeling like you accomplished anything. Find Flow in 90 minute distraction free intervals. You will be more productive and happier at the same time.
- Add Value – We are happier when we know our work makes a difference and matters to someone. But much of our work tends to be low value necessary evils. Things we do to make sure we don’t miss anything or because it is easier than tackling that big project that will require our full concentration and effort.
- In your role, what actions can you take that will add the most value to the company. What will make a difference for someone? Make a list.
- Work on the top 3 every day. Get the high value activities done early before you get lost in the mundane.
- Once you are confident you have added value and made a difference, then you can work on the mundane activities that are always nagging at you.
If you focus your time on adding value and making a difference you will be happier and more successful.
- Build Positive Relationships – Positive relationships are one of the biggest contributors to happiness. Fortunately, they are also one of the keys to success.
- Spend times with friends and family. It will provide a diversity of thoughts to help you solve problems more creatively as well as giving your mind a chance to rest and re-energize for better productivity later.
- Make friends at work – the resulting support systems will provide support when times are tough and will create inter-department networks that make implementing projects and ideas faster and easier.
Teamwork is a key to success and productivity and the social interactions will help you be happier.
Don’t skip over your opportunities for happiness. Flow, adding value, and positive relationships will make you happier and more successful.