Jessica graduated from university five years ago with a mission. She vowed to stay loyal and commit her talents to one tech company in Silicon Valley. Jessica did that---working her way up, diligently and gradually. But in her fifth year, she hit a roadblock. No matter how hard she tried, she just couldn’t give it her all like she used to. She would report to the office an hour after call time and miss project deadlines even to the point of almost losing a valuable client of the company. But Jessica, although drained and unmotivated, couldn't afford to take some time off. She had a mortgage and a college debt to pay and her dad’s hospital bills to be covered.
This is a classic case of motivation running low but the need to perform is high. As they say, motivation doesn’t come easy but the bills won’t ever adjust. There is simply no choice but to work and deliver. With the right mix of discipline and happiness at work, motivation could come back and you might even be working better than you used to. Here are some tips to be happy at work.
1. Enter an industry you are excited to be a part of.
Jessica did this right on the get-go. She has always been tech-savvy and has always dreamt of working at Silicon Valley. Like Jessica, you must at least have a picture of what you’re good at or what you have been enjoying doing ever since childhood. If there’s nothing that comes to mind, maybe you may reflect on what others compliment you for, a strength that you may not necessarily notice but is so strong that your peers commend you for it. An industry where your skills shine could be fulfilling for you and will help you stay happy at work in the long run.
Not every workday is a happy day but when you’re on a career path that you are proud of, it’ll be easier to have a general sense of happiness in the workplace.
2. Be in the hunt for a company that values and respects your time outside work.
Work-life balance is very important for a well-rounded life. If you just commit all your hours to work, there are high chances that you’ll eventually get burnt out and want to quit. This is why it’s important to find something you enjoy outside of work and a company that respects your life outside of it.
For some people, a job is just their money-maker and something they love because of the life it allows them to create. You will end up happy at work if you get to live the life you’ve always been dreaming of because your job gives you the resources to do so.
3. Communicate your career plans to your boss.
Let your boss know the personal growth track you are envisioning in the company. If you are superior know that you want this and that, chances are you’ll be given the opportunity to prove yourself. Be proactive and take control of your career by giving your all and proving to your boss that you have what it takes to fulfill bigger roles and responsibilities. Once you see yourself growing, you are more likely to feel happy with your job.
4. Always ask for an evaluation of your work.
Employees who don’t get feedback on their work often feel that their job is pointless or that the work they do does not matter that much to the company. If this happens, have the liberty to ask for feedback. Positive comments will surely uplift your mood and motivate you. Negative comments will help you improve your work performance and fill in your gaps. Feedback will allow you to maintain your strengths and to work on your weaknesses.
5. Keep a clutter-free workstation.
When your desk or space at work is clean, it also keeps your mind free from clutter. It’s easy to maintain its cleanliness by installing storage solutions. Flexispot is one furniture company that carries a wide range of cabinets and drawers that may help ensure your items are organized and safely tucked. Its Under Desk Drawer can be mounted to any desk surface and can provide additional storage without taking away desk space. Its Mesh Desk Organizer has three tiers with the bottom level being a pull-out drawer with inside compartments. Flexispot also has mobile file cabinets with three levels of storage and caster wheels that can be easily moved around the room. Most units also come with a locking system to make sure your essentials are safe and secured. Flexispot has lateral file cabinets as well that can make archiving and filing important documents easy for you.
6. Promise commitments you can keep.
Employees usually get stressed out when they start being unable to deliver their work commitments. They know that they are underperforming and instead of focusing on delivering what is needed of them, they begin to worry if they’ll be able to finish the work that has been piling up. This can place a heavy burden on an employee and eventually lose his motivation and happiness at work.
To avoid this pickle, track all your commitments at work and break them down into small, manageable tasks. Do each one step at a time and once you’ve finished everything, that’s the only time you should volunteer for other tasks if you want to. Manage your energy so that work won’t suck the life out of you. Ask for longer deadlines if you feel that you won’t be able to meet the original one. Always communicate and be a team player, especially if you are having trouble meeting your commitments.
7. Keep a close group of friends.
Man is not an island and although this is a professional setting, having friends at work can help make the workplace more enjoyable for you. It doesn’t necessarily have to cross over your personal life but if you have a strong friend in a fellow employee, it will help make work lighter and build a positive environment for you.