12 Career quick-fixes that can transform your life
Looking at things from someone else's perspective can transform your work life. (Shutterstock)
Never underestimate the power of an hour! Next time you find yourself idling away at the desk remember that in an hour you can transform your life and career in a multitude of highly impactful ways. Here are just a few things you can do in an hour (or less) that can improve your career and life significantly.
1. Greet everyone in the office by name
Make it a point if you don’t already to arrive every morning with a smile and spend those precious first few minutes of the day greeting everyone warmly and professionally by name. People like to work with people who are pleasant, polite and cordial so put on the charms and really make an effort to welcome everyone around you. In fact, 73.2% of professionals get along with their co-workers, according to the Bayt.com ‘Work Satisfaction in the MENA’ poll, November 2012, so don’t be the exception!
2. Thank someone
Think hard. Who is it you need to thank for a favor or special gesture even if it’s long overdue? This is an opportunity to rekindle relationships, reconnect with old contacts and remain top of mind. It could well be that a kindred spirit will have forwarded that gesture out of sheer altruism and all they need is a sincere thank you and an assurance they have helped you along the way. A card, a gift or a simple thank you call or email will go a long way. Here are Twelve Steps to a Better Life, which includes gratefulness.
3. Read something meaningful.
It could be a magazine article, a blog post or an entire book. You never know when you will stumble across that nugget of information that transforms your career and your life and inspires or elevates you to new heights. In fact, 85% of professionals in the MENA say they enjoy sufficient slack time at work to explore new ideas according to the Bayt.com ‘Innovation in the MENA‘ poll, January 2014, so use that time to read.
4. Take an inventory
Hold a mirror up to your career and life and ask yourself the following questions. Are you pleased and proud of where you are? Are you pleased and proud of how you got there? Is your attitude as healthy as it could and should be? What is it you have missed or miscalculated along the way? What would you like to do differently as of immediate effect? How will you achieve that change? One major common concern is work-life balance, with 43.3% of polled professionals saying that they don’t have a good one according to the Bayt.com ‘Work-life Balance in the MENA‘ poll September, 2012.
5. Write a plan
Many a mental plan has gone awry so it’s essential to sit down, preferably somewhere special, such as your favorite café, couch, conference room or corner of the office, and actively write down everything it is you want to, need to and would love to do in the immediate, intermediate and even long term if you like. Your notes could end up being a plan for a book you want to write, a few notes of a musical score, numbers to align with a budget, or some colors that inspire you to try out a new decoration scheme. The idea is that the process of actively writing allows you to discipline your thoughts and to hold yourself accountable for following up on and achieving your plans. By transforming a dream to a written plan, you have already started the process of realizing it. 85% of professionals have their long-term goals set according to the Bayt.com ‘Distractions at Work in the MENA‘ poll, December 2013.
6. Change your hilltop
Think of every human being as standing on their very own hilltop with their own unique vantage point of the world. Now clear your mind completely and try standing on another hilltop so you see matters from someone else’s perspective. It could be a difficult boss, report or coworker or even a client or friend. If you genuinely see things from their perspective you can heal rifts and make tremendous inroads in that relationship. Here are Tips To Increase Your Popularity at Work.
7. Improve your health
44.8% of professionals in the Middle East exercise occasionally according to the Bayt.com ‘MENA Professionals Health and Eating Habits‘ poll, March 2012. An hour of exercise a few times a week will do wonders for you but if you can’t spare a whole hour, any fraction of that on a regular basis is better than none. Building more muscle will ensure you burn more calories long after the exercises stop. Also try abstaining from unhealthy snacks completely; at the very least for an hour a day. Feed any cravings that hour with a glass of water. If you must snack, reach out for a reasonable portion of something very healthy that agrees with you such as a raw fruit or vegetable and keep telling yourself you are transforming your life and career by committing to a fitter, healthier you.
8. Choose a mentor
Asking for help professionally if you need it may be the biggest service you ever did your career and you may be shocked to discover just how many super successful professionals have had serious mentors in their careers, in many cases even multiple mentors that they have sought and asked for mentorship. Choose a mentor wisely for their personal rapport with you as well as their industry skills and coaching skills and networks and know-how. Be prepared to be a gracious and grateful mentee.
9. Clear your space
If the last time you cleared your office, home and computer files was too far back to recall, this is the day you bring out some boxes, dusters and take out the specs and get to work. Organizing your desktop and laptop and other physical spaces will help de-clutter your mental spaces and your life.
10. Coach someone
In every office, team and personal life there is usually someone we know is struggling with something we may be able to help them with even if it only to act as a sounding board and moral support. Approach someone in need and ask if your assistance is required then take the time to coach and advise or otherwise help if it is.
11. Meet someone new
The power of human contact to uplift and inspire cannot be overstated. Four in 10 respondents claim they are ‘somewhat stressed’, according to the Bayt.com Happiness and Wellbeing in the MENA Survey, July 2013, and getting to know someone new can help you de-stress and find new sources of joy. Take an hour to go somewhere you may meet new people and make new contacts who could be developed into lasting career relationships and hopefully friends. If you cant physically get out for any reason the good news is that there are myriads of ways to connect with likeminded people via social media on professional platforms such as Bayt.com’s Specialties and other leading professionally oriented social networks.
12. Dress the part
First impressions are vital so make sure whatever your vision of personal success is, you are dressed for the role already. In fact, 60.2% of polled professionals in the MENA feel it is important to appear fit, healthy, clean, happy, energetic, confident and well dressed according to the Bayt.com ‘Influence of Personal Appearance on Hiring Decisions‘ poll, March 2013. Whether you want to be CEO of your bank, partner in your law firm, a world class model or actress or trusted surgeon, make sure your appearance doesn’t conflict with the image of yourself you want to leave with others.
This article originally appeared in bayt.com.
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