There are jobs that we love, and there are those that we plug away at for a variety of different reasons. Maybe we stay around in order to establish ourselves in our first job, acquire updated skills, or perhaps it's simply to pay the rent. If you are currently in a job that is hard to get excited about, it's important to find ways to keep your head in the game.
These 10 tips will help you dig deep and stay motivated when your job is less than inspiring.
- Put yourself first. Whether it's before work, during your lunch hour or after work, get a good exercise in each day. Exercise relieves stress and creates positive feelings of well-being. It's in your best interest to keep your body healthy and strong.
- Stimulate your brain. Your morning commute is a good time to listen to an audiobook, an educational podcast, or download an app to learn a foreign language. Make a commitment to keep learning and growing personally, as well as professionally.
- Invest in looking your best. The way you dress and carry yourself affects your self-image. Go through your wardrobe and donate items that no longer suit your style or taste. Resolve to only wear things that make you feel confident. Taking the time to look your best will affect your attitude throughout the day.
- Minimize irritating distractions. There are so many daily interruptions competing for our attention - emails, texts, phone calls, noisy coworkers, social media, and online news. Once diverted, it is often difficult to get back on task. Change your homepage on your computer so you don't get sidelined by the latest celebrity breakup, vow to only check emails every 30 minutes, turn off your cell phone, and limit social media to lunch and after hours.
- Focus on your long-term goals. Do frequent check-ins to see how you are growing as a professional. Determine what are the next steps you can take to move closer to your ultimate goal.
- Look for exciting challenges. Let your supervisor know you are interested in learning more about a particular aspect of the job. Investigate the possibility of your company paying for training in the area you would like to spin off into. Take advantage of every opportunity that is offered while you are in your existing position. There may be ways to turn a ho-hum job into a long-term profession...even if it is at another company.
- Freshen up your environment. A living plant or a lovely vase of cut flowers is an instant inspiration boost. Devote a small spot for meaningful mementos - a grouping of seashells, a trinket from a recent trip - any little knickknack that triggers a happy memory and motivates you to create and inspire.
- Engage with experts. Use social media to your advantage by reaching out on Twitter or following someone you admire on their professional page. Retweet and share their work. Don't hesitate to engage with them and ask them thoughtful questions. You will be surprised by how many people will respond.
- Little details can make a big difference. Look at your writing pen. Does it glide smoothly across the paper, or does it skip ink and leave marks on your fingers? Instead of using plain file folders, choose a few in pretty colors and patterns. Attractive supplies will give you an emotional lift whenever you use them. For more on this topic, visit my Pinterest Page on A Fabulous Office.
- Look at the big picture. Take stock of what benefits you are receiving in your current position. You are establishing contacts and becoming known as a professional, even if it's in the industry you don't plan to stay in long-term. By staying focused on the "big picture," you are paving the way for your future success.