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8 Simple Ways to Enjoy Work More

enjoy work more

Do you look forward to work or do you dread it? Do your feelings about work depend solely on what you do, or does attitude play a role?

Because work comprises such a large part of our life, perhaps we should take a closer look at some simple ways to enjoy work more. Because we all have the ability to change our perspective, we also have the ability to change the way we feel about different aspects of our lives. Work is an area of life that is often ripe for a little perspective modification.

When work becomes a burden

If you allow yourself to get completely caught up in a productivity mindset, your life can turn into nothing more than an ongoing to-do list. Taken to an extreme, you may even start to gauge how you feel about yourself by how much you’ve gotten done that day.

Spend any amount of time on the to-do list merry-go-round, and working starts to feel like a burden. Instead of enjoying what you do, you just do it so it can be over with and you can get paid.

Can work really be more enjoyable?

What would it take for your work to feel more enjoyable and rewarding? Is there a way to create a mental shift that would allow you to start looking forward to working?

We spend a lot of time trying to find ways to be more productive, and I am all for productivity to a point. There’s nothing wrong with finding ways to spend our time more effectively. But instead of just doing more work in less time, it is also important to find ways to enjoy the work we are doing.

Whether you are an employee who needs to develop a more positive attitude toward work, or an employer in search of  HR software to make your job less stressful, their are things you can do to make work more enjoyable.

8 simple ways to make sure you enjoy work more

1. Focus on the positive. Regardless of what we are doing, there are usually some positive aspects to it. If the results are the most positive aspect of your task at hand, then focus on results. If someone’s life will be better because of your efforts, focus on that. You will get a lot more enjoyment out of your work when you choose to focus on the positive aspects of everything you do.

2. Don’t over think things. If we spend too much time dwelling on something rather than just doing it, we can easily make a big deal out of nothing. Taking action has a way of smoothing out bumps in the road, but procrastination tends to make them worse. The sooner we get moving, the less time we will have for over thinking every little detail.

3. Use high octane fuel. You wouldn’t put sugar in the gas tank of your car, right? Well, it doesn’t make much sense to fill your body up with unhealthy fuel either. If you don’t have enough energy to get your work done, you are not going to enjoy doing it. Good nutrition and plenty of sleep can make a huge difference with regard to how you feel about your work.

4. Remove hidden roadblocks. Why do you feel like avoiding work? What’s making your work seem like drudgery rather than being enjoyable? It might have something to do with your core beliefs about yourself. Is there some aspect of your work that conflicts with your core values or internal sense of identity? If what you are doing is out of harmony with your true self there will be resistance. Taking the time to connect with your true self will bring more joy to every aspect of your life, including your work.

5. Always do your best. Work can easily become a chore when you don’t care enough to do your best. There is a certain sense of satisfaction that only comes from a job well done. If you just show up and do as little as possible, you will never really enjoy your work because there won’t be any sense of satisfaction attached to it. Avoidance makes work feel less enjoyable, not more!

6. Set high standards for yourself. You should live and work by the highest possible standards. Don’t give in to the temptation to lower your standards to match the lazy goof offs who think they are getting away with something. The work you do is a reflection of your character and sense of self-worth. Living and working in a way that supports your highest standards will give you sound reasons to feel really good about yourself.

7. Focus on what matters. Because our minds are constantly pulling us in different directions, it is easy to lose sight of what really matters. The only way to get the truly important things done is to be ruthless at removing and ignoring distractions. There is no shortage of valueless busy work that can easily rob us of our time and energy. Don’t let that happen to you. Work is much more enjoyable when we focus on the things that really matter.

8. Think contribution. We enjoy our lives more when it feels like we are contributing value to the lives of others. This applies on every level. If we work as part of a team, then we should look for ways to add value to the group. If we work for a company, then we should seek to add value to the company. If we are entrepreneurs, then we should focus on adding value to those we serve.

Making your work more enjoyable

The more value we create, the more we will be valued by those around us. Even if we currently have a job that is less than ideal, we can still enjoy work more by adopting the right perspective.  The important point here is that we spend a big chunk of our lives working. If we can enjoy what we do, it makes our whole life more enjoyable.

How do you feel about work?
Do you enjoy what you do?
The lines are open!

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5 Comments

  1. Rana Shahbaz October 23, 2012 Reply

    Jonathan,

    All eight points are really spot on. Because of the social media noise it’s really hard to Focus on what matters.

    You’ll see good things will start happening, If you can grab only one point (Focus on what matters) out of this post :-)

    • Jonathan October 26, 2012 Reply

      I agree Rana, the next challenge is training ourselves to actually recognize the difference between what matters and what does not.

  2. Kyle October 26, 2012 Reply

    “If we spend too much time dwelling on something rather than just doing it, we can easily make a big deal out of nothing. Taking action has a way of smoothing out bumps in the road, but procrastination tends to make them worse. The sooner we get moving, the less time we will have for over thinking every little detail.”

    I could not agree more. “Analysis Paralaysis” is one of the most crucial mistakes to avoid in our daily work.

    Partly because it makes us less productive, but also because it makes us enjoy our work much less in the long run.

    My biggest takeaway from this post was the fact that while we all look at what directly affects productivity, we tend to to forget 2 simple things:

    1) How we feel about our work has massive indirect effects on productivity.
    2) Being productive is not the goal, it’s a means to an end (being happy).

    Thanks!
    Kyle

    • Jonathan October 26, 2012 Reply

      Well said Kyle, thanks for your perspective.

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