Running on empty at work just doesn’t cut it. Keeping up just for the paycheck, but your heart is missing when the pen hits the paper, isn’t worth it. Stop counting the minutes until quitting time; when even in those moments, nothing is really getting done.
When you don’t love what you do OR haven’t motivated yourself to be totally into work, it’s really hard to avoid giving the bare minimum.
Learning to love what you do isn’t as easy when you’ve already grown to really dislike it. Whatever steps you took down the gloomy path of being mediocre – instead of the greatness you once hoped for – takes effort to reverse.
The trick to turning things around sometimes is in another job. But often, it’s right in the mirror. Motivation is a huge piece of the puzzle. But changing how you feel is not easy. It starts with imagining yourself in a better place in your job. It begins with improving your work ethic.
Be specific about the things you want to do better at and build a picture of success. Then re-arrange your life to fit the new picture.
How To Go from Doing The Bare Minimum To Exceptional Work Ethic
1. Organize your time better
Change is NOT going to happen overnight. It is going to take planning, networking, and pushing to change bad habits.
It didn’t take overnight to get you to be less than productive at work. Therefore, it is going to take a while to dig a new reality for yourself. Start by being organized at how you spend time both on and off the clock.
Being too tired and buried in disorganization will hinder anybody from seeing clearly down the road in front of them. It just builds frustration and disappointment. You’re never able to meet deadlines or keep up because you forgot something, or you can’t find a paper in your files.
Taking your work ethic from the bare minimum to exceptional begins with organization. You need a calendar, desk organizers, and time management techniques to getting the most important tasks done first.
2. Find a support system
You need people around you that believe in you. The greatest challenge we have at work and at home is when people see less, instead of more, of your abilities.
It’s hard to see yourself for who you really are when you’re constantly on the defense from a bad boss or a disrespectful coworker. Also, when there is trouble at home. You have to start with a little hope and faith in yourself – even if other people don’t see it. Then eventually, when other people DO see it, they drop out of the equation and your REAL supporters will step up.
If you really look for the best in coworkers instead of how you can be better than them, you’ll find they will help, instead of hurt, your progress towards the next big promotion.
Whatever is going on at home can also have a big impact on your performance and work ethic. Working parents often come home to dirty laundry, they have to make dinner, or calm tantrums. Keeping up with these can affect your productivity at home.
Happiness at home will always contribute to happiness in the office. Helpful family members, or the nanny or Au Pair can keep things together, especially young moms trying to keep their head above water.
3. Love what you do
The difference between resenting the time you spend at work, versus enjoying what you do is like night and day.
When you change the direction with the power of positive thoughts and good old-fashion passion, this is when things change. What happens when the winds start to change the direction of the sail is they fill with air – and hope. All the sudden, things pick up at work. Your work ethic goes from being the bare minimum to exceptional.
When you love what you do, you perform in extraordinary ways. Your mind doesn’t stop. It doesn’t slow down. Ideas and ways to conquer new challenges at work are going to come more readily than they had before, when the clock was ticking and every moment was meaningless.
Sometimes, the problem is work. But more often, the problem is because it is hard to keep things new and fresh. After a while, you might not perform like you did those first few years out of college. Life experiences can drown motivation.
Without persistence and consistent effort to staying organized, surrounding yourself with people who believe in you, and learning to love what you do, your work ethic will be half-baked. That might cause you to feel the same way about yourself eventually.
Rise above it and make everything you do – and every job you complete – extraordinary.