When you wake up in the morning knowing that you have another workday ahead, you instantly want to go back to bed and just sleep. You are not alone. Just the thought of work makes so many people lazy.
It might look like it’s not that big of a problem because this feeling of laziness fades away in most employees. But for some, it grows into a habit that affects their work performance to the point that their other colleagues would notice and be affected as well by their laziness.
There have been talks that laziness actually does not exist. People are not lazy; they just lack the discipline and the motivation to do work and get it done. For some, it even becomes unbearable to continue work, wanting to hit the quit button and not do anything about it anymore.
Breathe. It might just be burnout from work that is making you feel this way. Pause and recalibrate. Make small changes and do not force doing anything big that might even make things worse. When it comes to developing a work routine, you’d need to incorporate small actions for you to show up at your best. Just try to be consistent once you’ve started and everything will come natural to you.
Below are habits that we’ve listed down so you can start dropping laziness at work and giving it your best 100% of the time.
1. Do a pre-work ritual.
It’s not the morning of the workday itself that you should be doing a pre-work ritual. It starts from the night prior when you allot time for a reflection of the day’s happenings. You pick up your journal and list down what about the day you felt the most and least thankful. To be more specific, you can write the tasks and assignments you finished and what it made you feel when you finished them. Write as well the tasks that you were not able to finish or the tasks that you weren’t happy about the results. Beside these less fulfilling tasks, write actionable steps that you can make to have better results in the future.
Afterward, we continue the future planning with writing what you will do for the next day. Jot down your tasks from the topmost priority to the least. You already know yourself and how big the task is so write a rough estimate on how long it will take for you to finish each task. There are people who assign exact time slots to see how they envision their next day to look like. Anyway, you don’t have to be strict with the schedule; it’s just there to serve as a guide so you get to finish everything on your list and adjust accordingly if need be.
In the morning, the pre-work ritual continues. Some opt to meditate. Others like to read a book or listen to a podcast. There are those who get a hearty breakfast complete with their first cup of coffee for the day.
2. Do the tasks in your topmost priority list first.
You have to conserve your energy in order to survive for the whole day. If you start with an effective morning routine, you’d have lots of energy at the start of your day which you should maximize. Channel this energy into the tasks that have a strict deadline, tasks that involve other people, and tasks that have a lot of weight in a project that you’re working on. When you finish these big tasks, your mind gets relieved immediately after having them done once and for all. We bet you’ll have more energy to do the next tasks once you get the ball rolling.
These big projects may be overwhelming for some so you can break them down into small, actionable steps until you finish the big task. Use interval timers such as working for two hours straight and then taking a break for 15 minutes before you go work again until the big task is finished.
3. Veer away from the things that distract you on what you should be doing.
You have to be aware of your daily distractions. When you are mindful of them, you’d notice during the day when you’re distracted and quickly jump back to what you should be doing.
An environment plays a very important role in staying away from distractions. Turn off phone notifications from contacts and apps that don’t matter on your workday. Do not work near your bed or the sofa where it’ll be tempting to relax for hours on end. Dedicate an area as your workspace. Invest in ergonomic furniture to help improve your work efficiency as well as give you a comfortable working experience. Unplug devices such as the television that will distract you from getting things done. Get every distraction out of your eyesight so that you are able to work nonstop.
4. Schedule regular breaks in your workday.
You can’t work straight for the whole day. When you do this, the chances are you get the work done but you’ll deliver poor quality outputs as well as cause you burnout over time. It is much more productive if you let your brain rest for a while. When we say break, you don’t necessarily have to do a mindless activity such as doom scrolling on your phone. We highly suggest walking outside and breathing some fresh air. Or you can do a quick 10-minute exercise and have a healthy snack after. Power stretches or a power will even help you, as the name suggests, gain back power once you start working again.
5. Do everything possible to have movement during the workday.
The sedentary life is tempting but at some point, you’d notice that it can make you sluggish and also cause health concerns in the long run. It’s much easier to feel lazy when you are just seated the whole day and looking at your desktop. Boost your energy by adding movement. It can instantly uplift your mood and energize you for the day. As mentioned, you can do power stretches every now and then. You can use a standing desk to conveniently switch from sitting down to standing up and vice versa. Or you can use a desk bike that allows you to cycle while finishing a work task. There are amazing things that exercise can do to change your work dynamics.