10 practical tips that you can do today to set you on the right course to thrive in a H.E.A.L.T.H.Y career.
1. Find Your Zone
Being in the zone, finding your flow or feeling your mojo – however you frame it, it’s fantastic. That feeling of being in control, doing something you enjoy and you’re good at and having the right conditions to focus so that you can give it your full attention.
Your Task: Notice the next time you find yourself in that positive state and think about how it came about. Finding what triggers your ‘flow’ at work can only be a good thing.
2: Put Work In Perspective
Think of all the things that are important to you in your life. Now rank them. Where does work sit? Even if it’s at the top, I imagine there is more than just work on your list. Now think about how you spent your time last week. Does this fit with your list of priorities?
Your Task: Make one change to your life to rebalance one element.
3. Talk to People
We are social animals. I know that some of us are more social than others but unless you are a hermit, you don’t live and work in a bubble. What you do affects others. Quite aside from the valuable information, help and connections that you can gain by talking to other people, it can help to break up your day and give your brain a chance to reset.
Your Task: Make a conscious effort to talk to someone new or to call/speak to someone who you’ve not connected with in a while. See what happens and how it makes you feel.
4. Know Yourself
Humans aren’t telepathic. No one can help you to change or advance your career if they don’t know what you want. But if you don’t know what you want, then you can’t tell them. It can seem like a vicious circle, but it’s one you can break with some thought. Give yourself the time to get to know yourself again and the ideas will start to come through.
Your Task: List 5 things you used to love doing as a child. List 5 things that you love to do now. How could you start to focus your work so that some of these things start to become part of your daily life?
5. Create Time to Think
Your busy conscious brain is working hard, reminding you of to-do lists, solving problems, giving you information and generally chatting to you incessantly. Our subconscious mind quietly sits at the back and nurtures our feelings, thoughts, instincts, beliefs and habits. It takes information from the conscious brain and adds it to the well of information that sits just underneath our awareness. The real magic, creativity and insight come when we give our subconscious brain the space and time to push thoughts forward into our conscious mind. It can provide the missing jigsaw piece, suggest a solution to a problem or give us a steer on which way to go with a decision.
Your Task: Turn away from your computer and spend 1 minute each lunchtime watching a #mindfulminute video on the @findyourwingsuk Instagram or Facebook feed and give your subconscious an opportunity to speak.
6: Celebrate the Wins
Bad stuff is always going to happen. We are going to feel irritated, unappreciated and defeated at times at work. That’s normal. What’s not healthy is to over-analyse the negative stuff and try to control it all, no one wins in that game. Much more healthy is to accept the bad stuff but then make a real effort to celebrate the good stuff. Any good stuff – the small things and the big things. Perhaps it’s as simple as a high-five to a colleague or you have your eye on a specific treat that really motivates you. Whatever works for you, try to do it regularly and find the positives every day.
Your Task: Make a quick list of a few things that could work as your rewards, small and big. Try to not to anchor it too much around food or alcohol for obvious reasons. Focus on things that make you smile.
7. Do More of What You Enjoy.
We all have bits of our jobs that we like and bits that we don’t like. The way to a healthy career is not just to balance them, but actually to have the good bits tipping the scales. You may need to actively change some of the things you do or the ways you do them to make this happen, but take responsibility for your own enjoyment of your job and see what you can do.
Your Task: Make a list of all the things you enjoy and don’t enjoy about your job. The pick one from the don’t enjoy list and see how you can minimise it or get help with it or even get rid of it altogether!
8. Be Curious
The quickest route to boredom and unhappiness at work is getting stuck. You get into routines at every level and nothing new ever crosses your path. By staying curious and having an open mind to learning, you can transform your attitude to work. Ask questions, see new people, volunteer for new projects, buy a new book, subscribe to a new podcast…. There are a million things you can do and you never quite know where new things will take you.
Your Task: Of those million things, list 5 which you could do in the next week to bring something new into your working life. Now do the easiest one. See you’ve started already!
9. Know Your Limits
No one else knows you like you. No one else can appreciate the specific details of any situation you find yourself in. You are unique, which means that you deal with life in a unique way. This also means that you need to take responsibility for you and tell people when you need something; whether that be some help, a break or for them to stop. Know your limits and learn how your body tells you that you’re getting close to them. Then do something about it. No one else’s opinion is more important than your health. Learning how to pull yourself back from the edge, reset, make a change and carry on is the core of resilience.
Your Task: Think of a situation which pushed you too far. If that situation were to come up again, how could you change the outcome?
10: Be Brave
Putting your hand up and saying ‘Yes me!’ very rarely has negative consequences – or at least they are never as bad as our overactive imagination would like us to believe… and the rewards can be incalculable. In the very worst case scenario if you put yourself forward for something at work and then decide that you can’t do it anymore, you have explored that path more than if you’d not done it in the first place. Every single thing you do offers a learning opportunity, especially the things that don’t go exactly as you imagined. So just go for it. Be brave and see what happens.
Your Task: Think back to the last time you put yourself forward for something. Write down exactly what happened. Good and bad. Now write down what you learnt from it.