How Do I Fall In Love With My Job Again?
A faithful reader of my articles asked me to address this question. It comes at a time when low employee engagement is a global phenomenon and a major leadership challenge. I wrote an e-book for married folk who needed to rekindle their relationship entitled R.O.M.P.
I injected various connotations of romping into the experience to spruce it up. Lightening the atmosphere at work also looks like a step in the right direction. So, I have modified R.O.M.P. for the work environment.
The “again” in the question is important. Loads of individuals never loved their jobs in the first place. This step invites you to bring back memories of when you got the news that you had landed this amazing job. Recall some outstanding achievements. Think of times when you worked late and hard and the joy that you got from the successful completion.
Reflect on the shared vision. The mission that you bought into and the pride you had in being of service to the cause.
Drawing blanks there? Houston, we have a problem J
The only way forward is for you to open your mind to new possibilities. One high impact approach is to enrich your job through your own actions. Volunteering to play another role not only creates new interest and excitement but has been shown to put you in line for promotions that you might not have received.
You also have to stop being such a fuss box. Things are not nearly as bad as you are making them out to be. Change your mind-set and it will transform your work experience. Don’t underestimate the power of your mind and your capacity to transform your outlook.
The job that I loved the most was one in which I felt like I was going to a party every day. We did have a liberal dose of literal parties together but even during office hours there was a cool vibe – linked to reminiscing on or looking forward to the next social interaction.
Some people stick to “I am not here to make friends.” Jump to other end of the spectrum. Make friends at work and see how much difference it makes when you wake up in the morning and wend you way to p _ _ _ _. Fill in blanks.
I know that work is serious. It is not about partying and games. There is a ton of stuff to do without adequate time or resources. And added to that, there are these colleagues with whom partying or playing games is not an option for you or anybody for that matter. Sorry lot!
Take it easy. Games afternoons do in fact lighten the tension and help you to see others in a different light. Organize or participate in one. It is guaranteed to make a difference in how you experience work.
However, the PLAY here was actually about work. Look back to movies of agricultural workers or chain gangs and you will notice the injection of something pleasant to make the hours go by more easily. They insert unrelated things to enliven their workday. A receptionist could play Lotto, betting that the next caller will have a first name starting with S.
At the executive level you could experiment with a sprint-pause-sprint routine. Work intensely at achieving a clearly defined result and then reward yourself with your favourite (work appropriate) relaxer. Then bury your head down to achieve the next outcome.
The key is to focus on short sprints. Don’t set up results that cannot be achieved fairly quickly.
What about those energy-sapping MEETINGS?
If you chair, think like a seminar facilitator and find ways to sustain interest. Engage!
If you participate, skilfully amuse yourself without being inattentive – doodle. Better yet, proactively cause the meeting to address issues you consider important and relevant.
Master employee engagement and DISCerning Communication skills in our SHRM-accredited Certified Behavioural Coach and 3-D Leader Certification: Leading Difficult People programmes. Earn PDCs for the SHRM-CP or SHRM-SCP certifications.
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Trevor E S Smith is a Behaviour Modification Coach with the Success with People Academy™.