4 steps to feel more energized and alive at work

fireworks happy new year 2016

Happy New Year!

To start the year off, I want to share a simple four-step approach to feeling more energized and alive at work in the year to come.

Step One

On a scale of 1 – 10, rate how energized and alive you feel at work.

Step Two

Ask yourself, “What could I do to increase that rating?”

Don’t just think about the big leap changes (like how to increase the rating from a 4 to a 9). One of the ways people keep themselves stuck is thinking solely in terms of home run solutions.

The cumulative impact of small positive changes over time can make a surprisingly big difference. So ask yourself as well, “How could I bump this rating up a point?”

Think of the changes you can make in these three time scales:

What can I do right now?

Are there any easy, immediately implementable changes you can make right now? For example, if you feel disjointed because you are always pulled hither and thither at work, could you block out a regular time for a meeting with yourself? A time to reflect, focus, and plan?

What can I do in the medium term?

What positive changes can you set in motion that would take some time to work towards? An example of this might be aiming to take on a new role in your job that would require you to learn new skills.

What can I do in the long term?

Here’s where the home run thinking comes in. Look at your career in the big picture. Where do you want it to go? Are you on the right track? If not, what does the right track look like? Explore what your long-term vision is for your career. Then start looking at the immediate, medium-term, and long-term steps you can take to get you there.
The very fact that you are consciously moving towards an objective that inspires you can be energizing.

Step Three

Ask yourself, “What could I change about myself that would bump that rating up?”

When we think about “career passion,” we tend to think in external terms. The work we do. The goals we’re inspired by.

But the internal picture is a vital component as well. For example, you can have the best job in the world, but if you are so habitually stressed that you can barely see straight, the degree to which you can feel energized by your work is limited.

Some examples of “self changes” include:

• Developing a meditation practice.
• Exploring mindfulness.
• Eating a healthier and more energizing diet.
• Staying well hydrated (this is one of the easiest and least acknowledged ways to feel better that I know of).
• Questioning and changing your negative stories. Is there another interpretation of an experience that might be equally true, more positive, and have less of a negative impact on how you feel?
• Something as simple as pausing a few times throughout your day to focus on your breath for 60 seconds.

In my own life, my big area of focus right now is on what I eat. The better I eat, the more energy I have in my day, the more focused I feel, and the more I enjoy my work. It has a huge impact both on how energized I feel and how well my brain works.

The more you can cultivate a solid internal foundation, the more inner stability you have. The more inner stability you have, the bigger the emotional buffer you have for when things go sideways, and the more ability you have to fully engage and enjoy what’s going right.

Step Four

Focus on one thing per month.

Pick one external change and one internal change, and focus on each of those for one month. When February comes, do that again. Same with March. And Apr…well, you get the idea.

Make the beginning of each month the opportunity for a “New Month’s Resolution.” Not only does this make it more bite-sized and manageable (while still being big enough to have an impact), it builds in regular check points to help bring your focus back to positive change if you have wandered.

So there you have it. Four steps to make the most out of 2016. Good luck!

[Want to get Wild About Work? Take the first step with my FREE audio course.]

–-

Brought to you by Curt Rosengren, Passion Catalyst TM

Time for a career change? Start with
The Occupational Adventure Guide