Originally posted in the Act! Community
I’m generally an excited person. I’m often the loudest person in the room. I can’t help it. I get wound up very easily. I get passionate about software, customers, support issues, and new technology with the fervor of some religious fanatic. It’s no coincidence that I work on a product with an exclamation point in it. I attribute my success to the fact that I’m happy and I share it. I think that people enjoy working with me.
I believe that business and the world is fueled by energy. Positive energy does not dissipate when you share it. There isn’t a pool of energy that gets depleted as you let it go. If anything, seeing the reflection of a positive attitude in the face of others will strengthen your mood. It’s not hard to be awesome. In fact, I believe it makes everything easier.
Here are some tips to improve your work and home life by infusing it with energy.
Take on new projects. Help your co-workers. There have been times that my days are slow and there’s little value that I can contribute. Two days of Facebook games and I’m unhappy at home and even lower energy at work. You’d think that crushing candy on the clock is the epitome of slacking relaxation, but it leaves me feeling more shame than staring at an empty family sized bag of Cheetos. “What did I just do?”
For me, increasing your personal reserves of energy comes from being productive. You’ll be surprised about how much you can accomplish when motivated to work at full capacity. Are you worried about being too busy? Try this exercise my wife uses to illustrate how you can always give more. Put your hand up in the air as high as you can. No seriously do this with me. Is that’s the highest? Now stretch a little farther. That’s the highest? Now stretch a little farther…
But really there must be limits somewhere. Feel them coming and let your coworkers know. Once you reach this point others will be willing to step in to lend a hand.
Find the joy in the day to day.
It’s important to feel competent. Make sure you are successful every day by completing a small task well. Relish that moment. A single success can carry you through a few days of frustration. Acknowledge your strengths and play to them. Be happy when you win!
Burn bright but don’t burn out.
For me that means taking a moment to disconnect once in a while. Personally I need wind or water to relax. The ocean is about as good as it gets with a breeze mixed with salt water eroding all my troubles and stresses into the Gulf Stream. But unfortunately, I live in the desert so I have to settle at times for a pool or shower and sitting in front of a box fan. And I visualize problems being washed or blown away.
Find your peaceful center and disconnect. Make sure that you can do this more frequently than you need. Don’t starve yourself for the time you need. You’ll be surprised at how little this takes away from the time you need to accomplish your goals.
Most of us need others to be successful. Recognize the hard work that others do for you. One of my regular tasks is at the end of every week I take a few minutes to write a recommendation on LinkedIN. Everyone wants to be a master of their craft. Praise the people that are that master for you. This helps spread the goodwill, their willingness to help in the future, and feels good. Too often the feedback we get is negative. For some people that’s all they hear all day long. “Do this.” “Do this better.” “I’m angry!”
Be the ray of light in a dull week. It will elevate everyone.
Find other passionate people.
Build your team with competent people that share in your excitement. Surround yourself with people that enjoy their job. It’s not tough, you can see them a mile away. Help each other by doing the things that others would rather avoid. Offer to trade word processing for Excel work. Remember, a small team of passionate people can change the world.
Ultimately you control your mood, and your mood affects the productivity of you and your co-workers. Decide that you will be awesome from now on; it’s not hard.