Most of us have dealt with it. Moments or periods of unhappiness at work. You may be in a great job or simply doing a job to earn a living – it happens to all of us, that feeling that something is off – a sense of angst where we just can’t put our finger on. I for one have been there more than a few times and, thankfully, have over the years developed coping mechanisms and techniques to deal with it.
Much of what I learned stems from my early workdays, reading and attending Dale Carnegie workshops. What I learned in those sessions was that the worse-case scenario one imagines rarely ever turns out that way and we truly do a lot of worrying for nothing. Worrying induces a lot of stress and drags us down even more. My adaptation of the Dale Carnegie would simply be the acceptance of the worst-case scenario and then just mentally force myself to move on from there. Another great technique which served me well was compartmentalization – mentally “roping” off the issue and not allowing it to overspill into other areas of the job.
I would also always make it a mental exercise to check in with myself at least once a week. I would simply visualize a thermometer with a 1 – 10 scale and assess where I was on it. As head of HR for the companies I worked for, it was important to portray a sense of confidence to everyone, but beyond that I also appreciated the benefits that came with being happy at work. For me, these were the ones that resonated most.
- Less stress – when stressed, I became less productive and experienced difficulty focusing on the things that truly mattered.
- Happiness felt better – For sure, everyone would agree to this, but I learned some time ago that certain hormones get released when we’re happy – oxytocin.Oxytocin is what gives us that toasty, cuddly feeling that we’re valued and that we belong.
- One is more creative when happy.How creative can we truly be when we’re constantly checking our back and working through fear?
- Happiness spreads.Our interactions with others produce better results when we’re happy. After all, everyone prefers to be around happy people.
- Happy people find ways to cope and are ultimately more successful than unhappy people.
These continue to be stressful times and more than ever it is important to take care of ourselves and take measures to keep ourselves happy at work. No matter where that may be!