I was inspired this morning by Gretchen Rubin’s article, 24 Tips for Being Happy At Work. My ultimate life goal is to enjoy all of life as much as I can, living and loving every moment. For me to achieve this goal, I practice loving work. My career is a significant part of my life, and it’s truly part of my love if I choose to let it be.
I’ve been in job search mode for the last month, seeking to find not just a job, but the career opportunity that will inspire, energize and engage me at work. Finding a position that is a good fit in my career is only part of loving my work. Any and all of us can get bogged down at jobs we love, and loving work takes an active approach.
Some of Gretchen’s tips are favorites that I practice regularly:
+ Sit up straight—every time I do, I instantly feel more energetic and cheerier.
+ Think about how your space could be more pleasant. Could you invest in some desk accessories to help stay organized? Could you replace a hideous lamp with something more attractive?
+ Go outside at least once a day, and if possible, take a walk. The sunlight and activity is good for your focus, mood, and retention of information
+ Even if you can’t go outside, take a ten-minute break each hour. Studies show that the break boosts your retention level.
+ Don’t let yourself get too hungry.
+ Say “Good morning” to everyone.
+ Periodically, have lunch with co-workers. This can be a time to talk about personal life, and so become better friends, or to talk about work, so that everyone has a bigger picture of what’s going on in the office—both good results.
Other tips I enjoy practicing include:
+ Smile at everyone you encounter. Smiling is contagious and instantly lifts your mood and the mood of all around you!
+ Compliment others! If you think a genuine complimentary thought about someone, share it. It’s guaranteed to make you feel great.
+ Decorate your workspace. As appropriate, include photos of loved ones, toys, workplace appropriate jokes- anything that brings you pleasure from seeing or touching it.
+ Take a look around. Every hour or so, take your eyes of your computer or papers and take a look around you. Look out the window, look at your personal photos, or just about anything that re-focuses your eyes and reduces eye strain.
+ Drink water. Drinking water is good for your body. In addition, getting up from your desk to refill your water bottle gives you a quick break. As an added bonus, drinking plenty of water will give you plenty of opportunities to take additional mini-breaks to the restroom.
+ Stretch. If you have room, take a moment at least once a day to stretch your legs, your arms, your neck and back. Check out these office stretches from Mayo Clinic.
+ Remember to take breaks. I set reminders in Outlook to take breaks. Without reminders, it’s far too easy to get lost in work and put off taking a break.
+ Practice gratitude. We all have reasons to be grateful. Don’t be complacent about what’s going right in your life- be actively grateful by sharing your gratitude with others or making a written or mental gratitude list.