The grind of a typical Monday-to-Friday work week may feel like a never-ending slog. Some days are certainly better than others, but there's always room for more happiness in life.
Professionals can use the three easy habits below to enjoy being happier at work, often via improving stress management or making work processes more efficient.
1. Switch Up Your Morning Routine
If you have a bad morning, you risk souring your mood for the rest of the day. Mornings play a massive role in influencing our mood for the day. If you ditch breakfast, don't get enough sleep and rush feverishly out the door, you probably won't arrive at work in the best of moods. Work can be challenging as it is, and working while in a bad mood makes time creep on even slower.
To avoid this, try switching up your morning routine for the better. Eat a good breakfast. Whether it's cereal, toast, eggs or bacon -- getting nutrients in your body will make your mind more alert and prepared for the day ahead. At the very least, grab a banana -- it's chock full of nutrients and can help regulate morning blood sugar.
Aim to make your breakfasts diverse. If you look forward to a delicious, nutritious breakfast when you wake up, as opposed to dreading your upcoming workday, you'll start your day off on a positive note.
Working out is a healthy habit, and it's also a great way to start your day. Whether you run a few miles or take a nice stroll around the neighborhood, getting your blood pumping and body moving prior to starting your work duties will prepare your mind and body for the day. Studies show that morning exercise can result in better sleep at night, which can start a positive cycle of improvements in your life.
2. Find a Reliable Work Process
Creating a work breakdown structure is a great way to improve your efficiency -- and in turn your overall happiness -- at work. It will help you determine deliverables and their respective timeframes, prior to the project's conception. Its power of foresight enables project managers to avoid bottlenecks, as the breakdown structure keeps team members on task and focused.
A work breakdown structure should outline tasks like:
- A statement and/or vision of the project's intentions
- Phases based on the project size and requests
- Deliverables that can be delivered in full and on time
- Tasks that involve each deliverable
Team involvement and resource allocation are the primary benefits of a work breakdown structure. Dissecting step-by-step methods prior to accomplishing them helps ensure there are no issues or probable bottlenecks. This results in more confidently accomplished deliverables and less client dissatisfaction, which can minimize the headaches and frustrations that come with the most stressful work weeks.
3. Reward Yourself
Most bosses and businesses don't frequently reward their employees, apart from an occasional gift card for a job well done -- but that doesn't mean you shouldn't treat yourself for a job well done. During an intense work week, allow yourself to unwind with a positive reward.
Taking yourself out to lunch one day, for instance, changes up the routine and keeps things fresh. You'll feel a sense of fulfillment that a job sometimes cannot provide, even in the face of apparent success.
If you can't make time for a positive reward during work hours, visit a restaurant at night or pursue a fun recipe while enjoying a bottle of wine. Rewarding yourself after completing a major project offers a variety of therapeutic benefits.