Remember when we used to love our job? We used to get excited about new opportunities and ambitions? But the day to day monotony of getting up, going to work, going home really grinds us down doesn’t it? That coupled with unrealistic deadlines, unachievable targets and office politics it is not hard to see why so many of us fall into the mindset of hating our job.
But considering we spend one third of our lives at work, wouldn’t it be great if we could do a few things to make it all a bit more bearable? Dare I say enjoyable? Without selling everything we own, retraining as a yoga teacher and running away to India or something like that (feel free to add your own fantasy here).
Well what if I was to tell you that it is possible to make things better
without a complete career change or even a desk change?
It all comes down to the art of practicing appreciation. “What??” I hear you cry, “Appreciate them? I’m the only one in that place who does any work!”
Well just wait a minute, when was the last time you really noticed your colleagues achievements or thanked them for their efforts or for helping you do your work?
Sometimes we forget just how much we rely on others to make our own lives flow so well and in the workplace we can work alongside people and have no idea what they actually do. Often it is only when the person is absent, on leave or about to leave the company that we realise just how much the person does as they are not doing those tasks anymore and they are either left undone or delegated to someone else in the business.
Appreciation is a wonderful thing: it makes what is excellent in others belong to us as well.
First answer these questions:
Do you ever take time to really understand what your team and other teams in the business actually do each day?
Do their real tasks map closely to their official job roles, or have things drifted and not been checked by annual appraisals or work reviews?
Is the culture of your business such that people can raise issues about their role and any changes that have been made or imposed on them?
Try these exercises to bring more appreciation into your workplace
Write down all the relationships and connections you have in your life. Write down next to each one how long you have known them, how deeply you connect to these people out of 10 and how much they mean to you out of 10
Write a 2 minute, positive email to someone you know, praising or thanking them. Try to do this every day for 21 days
While brushing your teeth, think of 3 things you are grateful for and why. Try this for 21 days.
Think about one positive moment in the last 24 hours and note down 4 details of that moment.
Trying these exercises for 21 days will not only improve your attitude to work but you will probably find it will spill out into your life and those positive vibes will effect those around you. Give them a try and let me know how you get on.