Strategies for Being Happier on the Job

Are you happy at work?

Are You Happy At Work?

Have you been having a positive experience at work? Has your job increased your confidence and capacity to contribute, as a healthy workplace should? If your answer is no, then you are not alone. According to a recent Gallup report, only 18 per cent of current managers possess the talent required for their role, meaning upwards of 80 percent of employees are working in poorly run workplaces.

Career *Happiness* Strategies

Many people think about career strategy; but fewer people have a conscious process to improve their happiness in all their jobs. There is lots of support for leaders to improve; however, employees also need support for dealing with workplace challenges. There are things employees can do about it, but it’s not as simple as “just change your attitude” as many often suggest.

Below are a list of strategies for developing greater happiness at work.

Envision Your Future Career

Think about where you want to be in five years. Focusing towards a goal you want can make your situation more tolerable.

Figure Out What You Need To Be Happy At Work

Think about what resources you need to excel at your job. Asking for things to help do your job better can sometimes go over better than other ways of asking.

Improve Yourself

Use this opportunity to learn about and develop yourself. This can make work more bearable and enhance your current position. It can also help you avoid the same situation later in your career.

  • Learn to process your emotions outside of work (e.g., by journaling). Sometimes this changes how others respond to you.
  • If you have low self-esteem or self-confidence, examine why. If someone treats you badly, that’s made much worse if something in you ‘re-tweets’ the message.
  • Remember: change is iterative and takes practice. Be patient with yourself.

Take Ownership

Accept your part in the situation and take ownership. This makes you stronger not weaker.

Understand That Things May Not Change

Accept that others, and the situation, are the way they are and may not change.

Become Better At Centering

Practice centering yourself, so you get good at doing so under stress. Activities like meditation, journaling, breathing and yoga are great tools for becoming more present.

Develop a Support System

Grow your network of constructive, supportive people you can brainstorm solutions with. Coming Soon! The Employee Point online support network, where you can support each other through workplace challenges anonymously.

Help Your Workplace Change

If there’s an opening, can you impact the external situation? Read about what makes an organization healthy and why. For instance, employee autonomy is known to improve motivation. Research steps to help organizations become healthier. Communicate benefits to organizational leaders.

Read about what makes an organization healthy and why. For instance, employee autonomy is known to improve motivation.

Dealing with Challenging Individuals

If the problem is linked to a particular person, consider the following:

  • Can you talk to them directly? Are they receptive? Do you have the courage? Can you hold your center? Learn and suggest communication skills that don’t cause defensiveness, such as nonviolent communication and mirroring.
  • Is there someone at work you can ask to help you learn to deal with the person better, for instance HR or a manager? Demonstrating genuine desire to improve may establish you as someone constructive.
  • If you want to bring a complaint, find out what procedures are in place to ensure safety and
    an effective process. Do you feel confident in the skills of the person who will handle the complaint?
  • Prepare before any mediation. Review your goals, own what you say and learn listening skills that reduce defensiveness. Think of ways to remain calm and reasonable. Ask for space to speak if needed. Focus on the problem, not defending your position. Be open to solutions that work for both of you.

Moving On

Remember, not every situation will improve. Sometimes it’s time to move on to something better. The decision to leave is tough, because you never know if things may improve; however, wanting things to be different can trap us in situations that may never change. Accepting things as they are, based on the best available information, can free us to move forward towards something better for us.

If you can hang on in your current situation, work towards a better situation there. Vision, plan, get training, and work towards your dreams.

Click here to access learning modules to expand your career happiness skills.

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