Who holds the power to improve your job? Part 1

Of all the principles in The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People, “Habit 1: Be Proactive” is particularly useful if you’re feeling frustrated,  demotivated or defeated in your worklife.

Covey recommends that you examine what you can do instead of focusing on things over which you have no real control. First, notice all your concerns. Then, from those concerns, determine which are the ones where you can take action.

He challenges us to to be more proactive and address the things we can do something about.

How about applying this principle to your worklife?

Think about what you would like to improve about your job.  Make a list of the things that you can do that would make a difference that require no one’s permission other than your own.

What things about your job (not someone else’s…)  could you change that would make it easier, more effective, more productive or just more fun? :)

The changes you can make depend on what’s important to you but here are a few  simple ideas to get you started that have worked well  for some of my clients:

  • Get to the office earlier so that you have some quiet, uninterrupted time to plan your day or to do jobs that require thinking space
  • Stop gossiping about other people – this really reduces the negative energy you absorb
  • Leave your desk at lunchtime and get outside for a while
  • Make a point of going to talk to people rather than emailing them
  • Clear the clutter from your workspace
  • If you’re contending with a “meeting culture”  start to influence your colleagues towards a more effective use of people’s time; ask for an agenda in advance and only attend meetings that are really necessary

Once you start making small changes you will begin to realise how much power you really hold when you are proactive, and how you can go on to take bold action and create more satisfaction and meaning in your job.

“Don’t spend your precious time asking “Why isn’t the world a better place?” It will only be time wasted. The question to ask is “How can I make it better?” To that there is an answer.” – Leo F. Buscaglia




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