We’ve all been there. In the beginning of a new job, you feel this excited and giddy feeling. You’re excited about going to work and feel fulfilled in what you’re doing. You look forward to going into the office, and truly enjoy your tasks each day.
Then, somewhere along the way, your relationship with your job loses that spark. Suddenly you notice that going to work isn’t as enjoyable anymore – now instead of being something you want to do, it’s become a chore. You dread going to work each day, and find yourself counting the minutes until time to go home or waiting impatiently for the weekend.
If you’re experiencing the doldrums in your work life, there are some things you can do to get the spark back. Here are some tips to help you fall in love with your job all over again:
1. – Streamline your to-do lists: One of the easiest ways to beat the doldrums is to get the most mundane tasks out of the way as quickly and efficiently as possible. The best way to do this is to make a to-do list and ensure that it is as streamlined as possible, and that you are not “double-working”. When you streamline the more mundane tasks each day, you’re able to check them off early on instead of spending time getting bogged down by doing them all throughout your day.
2. – Learn something new: Another great way to fall in love with your job again is to learn something new about it. Once we’ve been in a position for several years, a sense of routine beings to settle in. However, there is always something new to learn about a position, regardless of what it is. This may include reading up on articles of things going on in your industry, or even talking with someone higher up in the company than you are about how your specific job affects your overall bottom line.
3. – Reboot your personal appearance: It’s a fact of life – when you look better, you feel better. Many times when you don’t feel good about your job, it shows up in your appearance. Take some time to prepare for work each day by waking up a few minutes earlier. Make a commitment to yourself to dress nicely, to do your hair, and put on makeup. Doing these things allows you to have a shift in mindset regarding work – you’ll start to think of it as something to look forward to instead of something to dread.
4. – Congratulate yourself on small accomplishments: Many times when people dislike their jobs, it can be because they either feel unappreciated or unaccomplished. If either of these are the case (or even if they aren’t), you should take the time to write down things as you get things accomplished. At the end of each day, take a few minutes to look over your list and congratulate yourself on how productive you have been. This instills a sense of pride about yourself and about your work, making you more motivated to continue showing up and putting forth effort daily.
5. – Leave your work at work: How many of you take your work home with you at least a few times a week? With more and more companies putting the pressure on employees to do more with less (time, resources, etc.), it is easy to feel as though you can’t get it all done. Taking your work home with you, however, is not the answer. Being able to separate yourself from your job is vital to maintaining a good work/life balance, which is essential for overall happiness. The next time you find yourself packing up files to carry home with you, stop. Take a few minutes to straighten everything up on your desk grab your coat and walk out the door. Whatever you were working on will be there tomorrow – promise.
6. – Mentor someone: One of the greatest ways to create lasting joy in the workplace is to mentor someone. Whether it is the resident college intern or a colleague from another department, mentoring someone allows you to share your knowledge and ideas with someone else who is ready and willing to learn and grow from you. Not only will they appreciate you taking the time out to work with and guide them, but you will also have the added benefit of knowing you have added value to your company and to the person you have mentored.
These are just a few tips for getting back to your happy place at work. Of course, there are many other ways to find joy in your job again, so make sure to do what works for you. Remember that a relationship with your employer is much like a relationship with a significant other – both require an investment of time and effort in order to be successful.