We're constantly bombarded with the idea of finding love in our lives, through relationships with significant others, family, and friends. Finding and maintaining the love in those relationships is important, but what about the relationship between you and your work?
You're at work at least 40 hours a week -- 9 - 5, Monday through Friday, and let's get real sometimes you spend more time there than you're supposed to. Both physically and mentally. It's hard to feel excited about any relationship when it feels like a chore, especially work. Have you thought about getting back to the honeymoon phase and remembered why you fell in love with it the first place? Here are 5 ways you can, no matter what your position is.
Remind yourself what made you choose this career path or job. When you got your offer letter, what pushed you to say yes? Did you have any outcomes in mind? Were you seeing this job as a stepping stone to another position? Remember why you’re working this job and what your goals are, even if they are purely financial. Keeping sight of the finish line that you want to cross will help you push through those difficult days and moments of self-doubt. Keep track of your goals and achievements throughout the day, week and month. Remind yourself what you're trying to achieve and also what you've already accomplished. Knowing what the finish line is and how much closer you are to reaching it is very motivating.
Get a fresh look at your impact to the bottom line. Refresh your understanding of what your contributions do for the company. When you started this role, what was the objective of your team? Has that changed? Grown? How do you contribute to meeting this objective? Knowing how your daily efforts make a difference to your team and company goals affirm that your work is meaningful and is making a difference. If you are unclear on how your work is connected to the business, ask your manager to sit with you and review this.
Reward yourself. You spend a lot of time at work! What time are you spending on yourself? We shouldn't be waiting until the world turns upside down to take care of ourselves -- you should always be taking care of yourself mentally and physically. Whether that’s working out or treating yourself with a present, reward yourself for having the discipline to wake up each day and earn a living for you and your family. Take a walk during lunch, unplug from social media and technology with that book you’ve been meaning to read, or just take some time to watch your favorite movie. These small actions count. Knowing you have set time to unwind throughout the week may make going into work much more exciting.
Ask for a stretch assignment. Stretch assignments push you out of your comfort zone and encourage you to develop new skills. Sometimes when we fall out of love, it's simply because we've gotten bored and fallen into a routine. What's more exciting than a new challenge? There’s nothing like learning a new skill to reinvigorate your passion for work.
Network your A$$ off. Networking groups are one way to find resources that can aid you in a pivot if it's time for you to move forward. If you’re feeling stuck in your position and looking for a career change joining a networking group is a great place to start. Just remember networking groups are all about building relationships, not exchanging transactions, so come in with an open mind, not with a list of demands.
You can utilize any of the 5 tips above to make waking up for work tomorrow easier than it was yesterday! If these ideas still don't make you want to write your job a love sonnet, that's ok. However, spending a vast amount of time in a place where you can't find happiness is unhealthy. If you feel like you've exhausted all hope, consider what your next steps should be! You deserve to be in love with your job as much as anyone else.