“You are looking at the face of the person in charge of your happiness today and every day.”
Hi SOTGC community!
Here are the top Eleven Ways to Take Charge of Your Happiness at Work:
1. Be self-directed. Accomplish the tasks that are delegated to you and do your job so well that you become the go-to person for your role. Be reliable and consistent with the quality of your work. Once clear on the directions, start your mission without being asked or prompted. Be a self-starter. Anticipate and be proactive about assessing your schedule. Plan for upcoming projects and deadlines. Complete a daily activity log. Assess how your time is being spent to see if there is a more efficient way to accomplish your work.
2. Be the captain of your ship. Go beyond completing what is in your “job description” by listening and being aware of the company needs. Vocalize your ideas and goals to a company mentor or superior. You are the person who knows your abilities and interests better than anyone else. Expand your role and redefine your job description to incorporate new skills and projects to best serve the company and your personal growth. Taking this step will turn your job into a career.
3. Create opportunities. Be present in your role and the mission of the company. Move beyond viewing your daily tasks as mundane tasks. Be cognizant of what work habits are most successful. Create ways to do your job better, with increased efficiency and enthusiasm. Actively seek out new learning opportunities. Don’t become complacent in the day-to-day actions.
4. Ask for help. It takes a strong, smart, and confident person to know the limits of their abilities. Moreover, it takes maturity and self-awareness to identify when a task is outside of your expertise. Trust that your coworkers want to help. Lending a hand bonds us and creates opportunities for collaboration. We are better as a team than we are on our own.
5. Say yes to (almost) everything. (The almost caveat is a reminder to be selective about what you choose to take on. Avoid overcommitting to maintain a work-life balance.) With that in mind, jump at the opportunity to take on a leadership role on a committee, try for a board position, or take the lead on a project. As humans we are hardwired to take the road of least resistance and adding one more item on our already long “to-do” list can seem daunting. At the same time, we are hardwired to stay in motion and take more on when we are in a good work flow. A tremendous article draws a parallel between Newton’s Law of Motion relative to objects and the correlating tendency for people to stay in “productive motion.” Hence the tried and true saying, “If you want something done, give it to a busy person.”
6. Test your limits. The only way to know your professional capacity is to test it. Talk with your boss about taking on a larger or new role. Ask for a promotion when you deserve it. Apply for the job you are not 100% qualified for. The Confidence Gap article articulates a stark incongruence in female ability versus perceived worth. Shockingly, “A review of personnel records found that women working at HP applied for a promotion only when they believed they met 100 percent of the qualifications listed for the job. Men were happy to apply when they thought they could meet 60 percent of the job requirements.” Don’t hold back or underestimate yourself. Have confidence in your accomplishments and abilities. The worst they can say is “no.”
7. Define your goals. The most important step is physically writing them down. Put pen to paper and sketch out what you are working towards and the steps you will need to take to get there. Then, talk about your goals. Tell everyone. The more you can vocalize and reinforce your aspirations, the better. This will help you believe your goals are attainable. It will help garner supporters and sounding boards along the way.
8. Work hard. Show up early and leave late. Demonstrate your dedication through your actions. Triple check your work. Put pride into your work and leave the ego out of it.
9. Play hard. Create time for self-care. A great quote by Stephen Covey says that, “The key is not to prioritize what’s on your schedule, but to schedule your priorities.” Penciling in a brunch date with friends or setting aside time for a morning run might seem unnecessary. Making time for the activities you want to do seems like it would happen naturally. However, we can get so caught up in following through on the “hard commitments” that we don’t leave space for the life-giving activities. Family dinners and crossfit classes are crucial to keeping us in balance. When we schedule a specific date and time for the the fun activities, it is more likely that we will complete them. This results in guilt-free fun and an elevated sense of accomplishment.
10. Know when to apologize. If you make a mistake be honest and sincere. Communicate the steps you will take to right the wrong. Follow through on that plan. Treat each experience as a learning opportunity.
11. Choose positivity. It can be easy to ascribe a bad mood or unsavory experience to outside forces. If we truly examine our role in a situation we can see that our attitude and perceptions play a larger role in our happiness than the situation itself. It’s a classic case of mind over matter. Find the positivity in each experience. Every challenge is a lesson that, if used correctly, can help us overcome future obstacles. Wake up with the morning mantra, “You are looking at the face of the person in charge of your happiness today and every day.”
Take charge of your happiness, SOTGC community!
How do you take charge of your happiness? Join the conversation in the comments below.
We would love to hear from you! Tweet @SOTGC and @SEMeehan directly about how you control your happiness.