21 Things To Start Doing To Be Happy At Work

Written by Sam on . Posted in Career Advice, Inspiration. 19518 views.

Everyone would like to take steps to be happier at work. While “loving what you do” is important, it’s just as important to set goals and manage expectations. Happiness isn’t a given – it doesn’t happen overnight.

Happiness comes from realizing your potential and accomplishing the goals you set.

Here’s a list of things to start doing today to increase your happiness.

  1. Start focusing on what you can control.  Are you the type of person that gets worked-up and stressed out over the unknown?  Relax.  You’re not going to get fired, demoted, or transferred today – your boss doesn’t dislike you, your coworkers aren’t out to get you.  Rather than focusing on these negative what-ifs, put all of your energy into doing good today.  Avoid filling your head with variables you cannot control, instead take charge of your success by focusing on what you can control.
  2. Start believing in yourself.  Do you know what the difference between you and the person who is going to start the next big things is?  It’s not intelligence, it’s not money, it’s having the confidence to step out on that ledge.  Start believing that you don’t have to stay in the spot you’re currently in.   You have the ability do great things, but will you choose to do them?
  3. Start “putting hooks in the water”.  The only way you can catch a fish (achieve success) without having a hook in the water is by having the fish jump in your boat – and that isn’t easy.  Many of us don’t have any hooks in the water and are just waiting on dumb luck to strike.  Look into that investment property or small business – anything to get your feet wet and brain moving.
  4. Start getting uncomfortable.  That’s right, the more comfortable you are the less you’re growing as a person.  We all know how easy it is to maintain meritocracy by avoiding challenges and new things.  Snap out of this! Volunteer for the harder project to work on.  Challenge yourself today!
  5. Start becoming an expert in your industry.  What’s something you can do to start down the path toward becoming an expert?  Is it writing an eBook?  Volunteering to speak at your company’s next function?  Whatever it is….DO IT!  Experts get’s promoted and recognized (and feel higher levels of job satisfaction).  Here are 7 more ideas on how to become an expert in your industry.
  6. Start building better relationships with your clients.  Networking is essential to success in the business world.  Chances are you’re not fully connecting with your clients or coworkers.  Today, make a phone call, setup a lunch or even just shoot out an email in an effort to deepen a business relationship.
  7. Start organizing your resources.  On a scale of 1 to 10, how organized are you at work?  Do you have easily accessible (and backed up) electronic folders with all of your contacts, forms, projects, etc.?  How well archived are your bulletins, correspondence and emails?  Work on bettering your structure today…an organized desk is an efficient desk!
  8. Starting focusing on the interesting part of your job.  No where does it say that you have to be bored at work – even if you have a “boring” job.  Most of us are not supermodel photographers or record company executives, however, there are aspects of our jobs that are interesting.  Find the interesting in the ordinary and you’ll have a better outlook on your job and life in general.
  9. Start setting real goals.  Quick, what would you like to achieve today…next month….next year?  If your answer is to not get fired or if you’re still thinking about it, chances are you’re going to find yourself in the same spot then that you are now.  Entrepreneurs and executives don’t achieve success overnight, they first set goals and then spend the next day, week or year working toward reaching them.  What’s the first small step you can take today to achieve your goals?
  10. Start being looked at as an innovator.  What is something you could be doing differently today at your job?  Yesterday I created a PDF form for us to use – rather than printing out a form, filling it out and scanning it back in, now we just type it in on the PDF form.  This saved us time and money.  This small tasked gained the respect of my employer and coworkers (more so than any other day-to-day task would have).  Think for a minute about something in your processes that could be more efficient.
  11. Start putting people first.  It’s easy to lose focus on the people around you, only concentrating on the numbers.  Today, try to make it a point to say good morning to the people around you.  Ironically, the more you put people first the better your company will perform.
  12. Start preparing for next year.  Do you have a clear plan on where you’d like to be a year from now.  It could be a higher position, a new department or a new company altogether.  Whatever your goal may be, clearly set it.  It can be very easy to just take work one day at a time – do your best to avoid this.  I make it a point to first write down my goal, then make a checklist to work on throughout the year.
  13. Start beginning your morning right.  Your attitude, routine and even diet will set the tone for your day.  Begin your day right by focusing on the 8 Ways Financially Successful People Start Their Day.
  14. Start realizing you’re doing pretty good.  Sure you’re probably not a millionaire with your own private jet.  You’re probably not even on the path to becoming one.  Despite this and what the media wants to convince you off, you can still be happy!  One of the few lessons I’ve learned with certainty is that there is absolutely no correlation between the size of your bank account and your level of happiness.  Focus on what you have to be happy about – not on what you’re missing.
  15. Start thinking about your retirement plan.  Have you been pushing this off and blocking it out of your head?  The older you get, the harder it is to set in place a retirement plan.  There’s no magic bullet or overnight fix, but take the first step toward retirement right now; log into your work account and take advantage of ‘free money’ by maxing out any employer matching 401(k) or stock purchase program.
  16. Start investing in yourself.  Every two years you should add a license, certification or expertise to your resume.  Not only will this make you more marketable to potential employers, it will boost your confidence and expand your perspective.  This is always one of the top recommendations that I give people – if you feel trapped or in a rut, invest in yourself.
  17. Start being inspired.  I’m a big believer in surrounding yourself with “inspirationals”.  I’m not talking about the cheesy posters your company insists on hanging up everywhere – I’m talking about sunlight, organization and energy.  First, be organized…it’s hard to have a clear mind when your workspace is a mess.  Second, get out there in the sunlight if you can – have the opportunity to work from home, take it!  Third, have positive energy out there for you to see – I get a smile or two a day out of a digital picture frame with funny pictures of my kids…what works for you when it’s 3:30 and need need your second wind?  This is further evidence of the 12 Reasons Your Boss Should Be Begging You To Work From Home.
  18. Start learning from the successes and failures of others.  Not only is it interesting to read biographies of other’s who have succeeded, it’s also a great source of inspiration.  Warren Buffett, Steve Jobs and Jack Welchall have great stories which may inspire you to be someone better.
  19. Start being prepared for the worst.  There’s a chance you won’t be working for your company next year.  Some of us with move on based on our own will, some will be laid-off.  Regardless, today you should make sure you have all of your files backed up, your contact’s information archived and your insurance/retirement information stored.  I’m not saying the worst case will happen – but if it does you will be a lot less stressed if you’re prepared.
  20. Start mentoring others.  Your relationships with coworkers, senior and junior, makes the difference between advancing/growing your business, and not.  Specifically, your ability to help educate those around you.  Being seen as a team player will payoff in the long-term and increase your chances for promotion and management consideration.
  21. Start setting aside 15 minutes for personal time.  Spend 15 minutes a day to take all of these goals to think about – keep them in the front of your mind.  The more conscience you are of your happiness, the happier you’ll be.  Good luck.

What’s something else that you think can be done to increase happiness at work?  Leave us a comment.


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