We can make work fun, enjoyable and emotionally satisfying. Don’t dread certain tasks, use these 10 ways to turn even the most challenging tasks into a game. Find the psychological rewards of doing good work.
Work consists of whatever a body is obliged to do, and play consists of whatever a body is not obliged to do. -Mark Twain
With all due respect to Mark Twain, I think there is a better way. Work can be fun. Any work can be turned into a game.
Here are a few ideas to help you find the fun in any job:
Play music. Turn on your CD player, MP3 player or even the radio. Music has the ability to draw our minds away from the more disheartening aspects of any job.
Make your work a competition. If you are working with someone else, make it a race to see who can get it done soonest. Or who can complete the most of each task.
Just dive in. Most of our feelings of dread disappear once we become immersed in a project. Whatever it was that made us put it off or want to avoid it, just goes away once we get started.
Ask yourself, what can I find to enjoy about this? Few jobs are totally devoid of any feelings of satisfaction that comes from just doing it. Psychologically, we need work in order to be happy. Work itself is often its own reward. Make an effort to find what gives you satisfaction in the job at hand.
Keep score. If your job is to make cold calls all day, keep records of how many calls you make. Break down how many you make before noon, how many you make each hour and how many you make for the entire day. Then on subsequent days, see if you can beat your previous day’s numbers. This builds a challenge into the job instead of it being one huge objective.
Can you make your job a team effort? Involve a friend or work side by side with someone whose company you enjoy. Companionship can make most experiences more enjoyable.
Take breaks. Don’t let fatigue rob you of any joy that comes from doing good, honest work. Stop occasionally and stretch or walk around. Come back to the job when you feel refreshed.
Break the job down into more manageable tasks. Big jobs tend to overwhelm us and demoralize our will. By making a big job several smaller jobs, you can enjoy that feeling of satisfaction sooner and more often as you cross each small job off your list.
Do quality work. Sloppy, get it done work feeds no one’s ego. There are tremendous psychological rewards that come when we know we just produced good work. This sounds silly, but I have gone back into a clean garage, after spending my entire Saturday morning straightening it out, just to look at and appreciate my own workmanship.
Change the setting. Can you take the job outside? If you have a back deck on your house, take some jobs outside and enjoy a beautiful day while you work. Do you remember those beautiful Spring days when a teacher might have occasionally taken the entire class outside to teach outdoors? Try to do that with your own work.
Work is what you make it. Few jobs are as boring or agonizing as we sometimes make them. If you can turn work into fun, how much more enjoyable would your entire life be?
COPYRIGHT(C) 2006, Charles Brown. All rights reserved.
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