The new year brings hopes and dreams for the future. You've made your resolutions –– to lose weight, exercise, or plan a dream vacation, for example.
Don't forget, however, that you also spend one–third of your day at work. You can improve your on–the–job enjoyment and your productivity by making the following work resolutions.
Learn new skills
To keep your career moving forward and prevent burnout, learn some new skills. Investigate which ones you'll need for a promotion or for your dream job, then make sure you acquire them. Make a resolution to always be learning something new.
Most people don't function well in the midst of chaos. The clutter on your desk likely distracts you and muddles your thinking. If your office is disorganized, the time you spend getting organized will be paid back in less stress and increased productivity.
Make a resolution to spend the last 15 minutes of every day clearing your desk and getting organized for the next day.
Take daily breaks
Human beings aren't built to sit at a desk for hours at a stretch –– that's why the coffee break was invented. But, there are better ways to use your breaks –– quick, simple techniques that
rejuvenate the body, mind and spirit so you can return to work refreshed and ready to accomplish great things.
The following energizing breaks take less than two minutes: Count down from 10 to one, taking a deep breath with each number. Read affirmations, inspiring quotes or poetry. Read a couple of pages of a book.
Put your hands over your eyes and visualize a favorite vacation spot. Gaze out a window. Listen to your favorite music. Stand up and stretch your muscles. Doodle. Drink a full glass of water. Eat a healthy snack. Take a short walk.
Structure your time
Are you wasting time taking care of things that just aren't important? If so, you'll be frustrated when you fritter away your workdays doing things your boss would consider insignificant.
The solution is to block off one or two hours of quiet time each day that you spend focusing on your important tasks. Since most people concentrate best in the morning, choose your quiet time early in the day. Then transfer your calls to your voice mail and put a ”Do Not Disturb” sign on your door.
Make a resolution to set aside quiet time every day to work on your important projects.
Keep an accomplishment journal
Buy a separate notebook for an Accomplishment Journal. At the end of the day, write the date on a new page and write something that you accomplished. It doesn't have to be something major. Even little steps of progress need to be acknowledged.
For example: ”I dealt with Mr. Jones, a difficult customer, in a very kind and professional way.” ”I wrote two pages of a special report.”
Writing such a journal increases your enthusiasm as you look for things to accomplish and write in your journal. Your focus will be on what you did instead of what you didn't do. Keeping the journal will also give you more confidence during employee reviews or when asking for a promotion.
One last thought: When you follow through on your work resolutions and make them daily habits, you'll experience increased productivity, more energy and enthusiasm and the joy of accomplishment.
10 Tips to Help Create a Happy Life
1. Make happiness a priority. If happiness is not at the top of your list then other things will take precedence. If other things take precedence, they may well interfere with your efforts to feel good.
2. Make plans to be happy. Those who fail to plan, plan to fail. Just like in any other life domain, the successful pursuit of happiness requires planning.
3. Set happy goals. Following on from Tip 2, planning requires effective goal setting. And don't forget to make sure your goals are SMART (specific, measurable, achievable, relevant and timed).
4. Do things that make you happy. Although this sounds obvious, many people simple forget to do things from which they gain pleasure. And do them as often as possible.
5. Set yourself tasks from which you'll gain satisfaction. As well as pleasure and enjoyment, satisfaction is also an important part of happiness. So make sure that when you're planning your tasks and activities you include things that might not be fun, but from which you'll gain a sense of achievement.
6. Play and have fun. Don't take life too seriously. Although we all have responsibilities there's no reason why we can't approach much of our lives in a playful manner.
7. Identify where your strengths lie. Know where your faults and weaknesses are to avoid problems. Know where your strengths lie to be really happy and to succeed in life.
8. Utilize your strengths. Although we all can and should endeavor to improve in areas in which we're weak there's just as much, if not more, to be gained from focusing on the maximal utilization of your strengths (including all your positive qualities and attributes).
9. Be curious. Constantly search for new ways to be happy. Keep a look out for new ways to approach life and to have fun.
10. Be grateful and appreciate what you have. We all have many choices in life one of which is whether to focus on all the things we don't have, or to focus on all the things we do have. There's no doubt, that gratitude and appreciation will significantly increase your chances of experiencing happiness.
Dr. Timothy Sharp
Lemon and Turkey Orzo Soup Recipe
–– 2 celery stalk, chopped
–– 1 onion, chopped
–– 4 garlic cloves, minced
–– 3 carrots, chopped
–– 1 tablespoon olive oil
–– 2–3 cups chopped cooked turkey or chicken
–– 1 bay leaf
–– 1/2 teaspoon dried crushed rosemary
–– 4 cups chicken stock
–– 4 cups water
–– zest and juice from 2 large lemons
–– 1/2 cup uncooked whole wheat orzo
–– 2 handfuls torn fresh spinach leaves
–– salt and pepper to taste
In a large soup pot, heat 1 tablespoon oil over medium heat. Add celery, onion, garlic and carrots. Season with salt and pepper and let cook for 5 minutes until they start to soften.
Add cooked turkey or chicken, bay leaf, rosemary, chicken stock and water. Bring to a boil and let simmer for about 15 minutes. Add lemon zest, lemon juice and orzo. Let cook for another 15–20 minutes or until orzo is cooked. Add torn fresh spinach 5 minutes before turning of heat and serving. Taste for salt and pepper.