Five behaviors of people who are happy at work

Five Behaviors Of People Who Are Happy At Work

“I’m good at my job, Rebecca, really good. And I want to stay here. I just want to be happier in it.” A coaching client recently defined what so many of us experience. We work really hard to get ahead in our careers and yet so often, even when we get to the “dream job” we can catch ourselves being busy but not really enjoying our day, every day. So who are these people who seem to be genuinely happy in their work? Here are five behaviors that can make you happier in your daily work.

1. Know what makes you happy — personally

It’s easy to evaluate and reflect on to what degree we are happy (although that’s not to say we do). It’s harder to define what it is that makes us personally happy. You are unique so what makes you happy will be unique. Going broader than just your work context, write a list of the daily things in life that bring you happiness. Paul Dolan, Professor of Behavioural Science at LSE, offers a powerful way of thinking about happiness, the “pleasure-purpose principle.” He says happiness includes both pleasure and purpose, not just positive emotion. So don’t just note down what things bring you pleasure; also consider the activities that give you the greatest feeling of engaging in something purposeful.

2. Proactively build happiness into your daily working life

Happiness doesn’t just happen. We need to not only be self-aware about what makes us personally happy but also to intentionally build those things into our day. It’s easy not to, particularly when we’re busy and rushing around. But small changes can make a big difference. Consider things as simple as particular music you love, food you enjoy that brings you a sense of well-being, reading or spending time one-to-one with a friend over your lunch break, creating a workspace that makes you happy or finding alternative spaces to work that you enjoy. These seemingly small changes when proactively and purposefully built into our day can have a significant impact on how we feel about our day and our sense of happiness through it. Decide on three things you could regularly build into your working day and what action you will take to introduce them or make them a more consistent part of your work.

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