Has today been a really bad day? A boat load of issues to resolve, troubles to fix, and clients to re-engage with. Just the kind of day you hate right?
Even people who are relatively happy at work go through periods when they hate their jobs—for days and even weeks. While I have days I hate, I really like what I do and always have. So it got me thinking. As frustrated as I am some days, why is there no doubt in my mind that I’m showing up again tomorrow? How do I refocus on the job I love on a days that are difficult?, and what kind of example does this provide to my team – the people I’m tasked with leading?
1. You are not the only one.
I read an abridged biography of reporter and newsman Mike Wallace, who died on April 7, 2012 at the age of 93. His biographer noted that Wallace suffered a nervous breakdown when his documentary on deception by the American military about the strength of Vietnamese enemy troops prompted a $120 million libel suit against CBS filed by Gen. William C. Westmoreland, the commander of American troops in Vietnam from 1964 to 1968. After the case settled in 1985, Wallace spent more than 20 more years at CBS. Life goes on.
2. Look for Positive Influences
The work day is what you make of it. There is usually something positive that you can discover from every negative situation. It all depends on your outlook. Look for the positives instead of the negatives. Remember what Martin Luther King said, “Only when it is dark enough can you see the stars.” Difficult times require your best efforts. You must step up and be a leader when people are looking for guidance.
3. Follow a Different Pattern
Many people feel trapped by work because they are unable to do the school drop off or look after aging parents. The mistake they make is not making their frustration known to their superiors – don’t live in silence. Talk to your boss about shifting your hours. You’d be surprised how many option you may have.
4. Be Ruthless with Your To-Do-List
Few things are more demoralizing at work than the inbox filled with unsorted and unread emails or your desk piled high with unread documents and unfiled folders. Depending on how long you’ve left these unattended they are likely easily deleted. If they are, nuke them. Also, play around with the apps on your computer or smartphone to see which ones can help you be more organized going forward.
In the end it takes leadership and commitment to create a happy work environment – So here is a little hint – if you do nothing else on the days you hate, no matter where you sit inside your organizational structure – Remember the job you love and appreciate those people around you – and the good feeling will rub off on you too.