Hope is amazing, but it can also be disheartening. Look at it this way, pretty much everyone that works everywhere wishes they could work at Google. They have delicious free food available at all of their cafeterias, sleep pods and the chance to spend 20% of their time on personal projects. They are 100% the leaders in free-thinking, creativity, and employee happiness.
Unfortunately, though, not everyone can work for Google. In fact, hardly anyone will get the chance to enjoy the perks of working for Google. But that doesn’t mean you can’t find happiness in your current work environment. In fact, it is totally possible to enjoy work, it is just a matter of knowing how to find it, achieve it and keep it.
1. Make it a choice
Happiness can be a choice because happiness is, in large, to do with attitude. As the author William Hunter Howell wrote in his best-selling book, if you don’t like something then change it. But if you can’t change it then change the way you think about it. If you wake up in the morning and feel horrible about having to go to work again, then you are going to struggle to snap out of that negative mindset all day. If, however, you can wake up and feel positive about the day ahead, then you will see that reflected in your happiness levels. This could be achieved by starting your day with yoga, or concentrating on the positive aspects of your job, or avoiding the negative people in the office, or hanging out with happy and positive people. Happiness is largely controlled by the choices we make, so make happy choices.
2. There Are Services To Help
Life is stressful, and work is one of the most stressful parts of that stress. But with every problem, there is a solution at hand, it is just a matter of finding it. That is where things like employee assisted programmes come in. EAP programmes, such as the Health Assured programme, can vary considerably in terms of the types of support they offer. Most will include clinical and non-clinical elements to support employees on a range of personal and work-related issues. Work is hard, the environment can be tough, and that is why the right support can be critical in being able to smile – and smile genuinely – when at work. In Slovenia, we have work groups and work therapists always ready to help (ping me if you need anything:))
3. Go And Get Your Feedback
We all know whether we are doing a good job or not. Our bodies and brains have this way of alerting us to the positives rewards of work well done and vice versa. However, that is often not enough. We need to feel acknowledged and appreciated. We need to know that we are progressing at a pace that our managers and bosses are happy with. That is where being proactive comes in. Seek out some feedback from those more senior and you will be granted a certain clarity that can improve happiness. Left in the dark, or second-guessing yourself, can be wholly detrimental to your wellbeing. You are responsible for your own development and happiness, and taking charge will help both of these.
4. Take Control Of Your Development
One of the biggest traits among workers is the belief that they need – and deserve – to be helped in all aspects of their professional development. They see it as a requirement by their employer to help them get the most out of their skill set and talents. But this is not the case. It is your responsibility to take charge of your own development. You should be the person that is most interested in your own development because you have the most to gain from it. As such, your happiness levels are pretty much directly linked to your ability to take charge of your own growth. If you take control and start growing, then your happiness will follow suit. But the same will happen if you stand still.
5. Make Some Real Friends
One of the most effective ways to be happy at work is to have friends there. A hugely successful poetry publication called Mud Press is a great example of this. Their employees are genuinely best buddies, and as a result, they don’t even consider their work as work. Basically, enjoying your coworkers has all the traits of encouraging a positive and happy working environment. You’ll have that something to look forward to, which will affect everything else positively too. If you don’t have any friends at work yet, then make the effort to get to know them better. You never know, a budding friendship may blossom out of a quick hello to someone in the kitchen.
Is anyone working with friends? How do you really feel at work? Let me know down in the comments.