93,800 hours. That’s how many most people spend at work over the course of their lives. It makes sense then that we not only put it to good use but also that we happy doing it. In his landmark book, Man’s Search for Meaning, Victor Frankl says “The one thing you can’t take away from me is the way I choose to respond to what you do to me. The last of one’s freedoms is to choose one’s attitude in any given circumstance.” Regardless of whether you have the boss from hell, customers that don’t appreciate you or a 2-hour commute one way, only you determine how happy and productive you are at work. Considering that sometimes our livelihood depends on it, we should figure out how to do both. Here are five ways.
Nearly everyone I talk to these days wants more time. If only they had a few extra hours each day they’d be able to get everything done. Many people I know cut their sleep short in order to have time to squeeze Netflix, work and family into their daily lives. Weekends are no longer reserved for our families, as we try and get a head start on an upcoming project or are rushing to finish off one before the deadline.
When people ask me what they should do, my answer is always the same – “Show me your schedule.” Most people have a general idea of how they spend their days, but few know just how much time they are spending on certain things. We tend to overestimate the good we are doing and, at the same time, understate how much time we are spending doing things we know we shouldn’t.
If you want to boost your productivity and get more done in a week than you’ve ever done before, schedule everything. Clients often respond by saying, “Everything.” To which I respond with a smile. Winging it won’t cut it. You’ve got to schedule exercise. You’ve got to schedule sleep. You’ve got to schedule family. If not, don’t be surprised if you find yourself overweight, suffering from a lack of sleep or having trouble at home.
Prime Yourself for Success
I love TV. There are so many great shows on and gone are the days when we had to rush home to watch the next episode of Seinfeld. We have HDD recorders and Netflix to thank for that. However, the news is another kettle of fish. I stopped watching the news a few years ago after listening to Jim Rohn’s amazing 2004 Leadership Event.
Why? According to Peter Diamandis, 90% of the news in the newspaper and on television is negative because that’s what sells. I decided that rather than listen to the woes of the world, which have little if any effect on my life, that I could invest that time in changing my life. I picked up every audio program I could by Jim Rohn, Brian Tracy, Tony Robbins, Brendon Burchard and more. The results were like night and day. Rather than heading to the office with my mind filled with terrible things, my mind was armed with powerful ideas and my attitude was completely different.
Best of all, my one-hour commute went from being unproductive and something I dreaded to something I actually looked forward to, and you can, too.
Afford Negative People
We’ve all been there. You’re sitting around a table with a group of friends and acquaintances enjoying a lovely dinner and then one person ruins the entire mood by saying something insensitive or rude.
In the bestselling book Emotional Intelligence, Daniel Goleman believes that negative words have 24 times the impact of positive ones. That means for everyone one “You’re stupid” you hear, you need 24 people to say you’re smart. Robert Kiyosaki, the author of the Rich Dad series, believes it can be worse than that.
Negativity is such a drainer. Avoid the Debbie Downers of the world. Instead, surround yourself by friends who challenge you to be better.
People look as exercise as one of three things: torture, a necessary evil, or the best thing since sliced bread. I tell clients to look at exercise as a way of not just getting a six-pack, but rather a way of improving their attitude, boosting their productivity and living healthier lives.
Numerous studies have shown that people who exercise regularly benefit from improved self-esteem and have lower rates of depression. But the benefits don’t stop there. Exercise helps reduce stress, strengthens our heart, lowers blood pressure, and you’ll sleep better, too.
Best of all, you don’t need to become a gym freak to reap the benefits, all it takes is 20 minutes a day. That’s a small price to pay if you ask me.
I’ll never be a vegetarian. I love meat too much. However, over the years, I’ve learned that salads can be mighty tasty. A good Caesar salad should knock you off your feet. Near me, a few restaurants have salads that are to die for. A salad doesn’t have to be boring, but it should be something we enjoy. Thanks to Google, 10 minutes is all that’s needed to find a recipe that could change your life forever. I like to say, “Feel good, do good.”
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