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5 Ways to Shine & Succeed at Work

Have you ever found yourself stuck in a rut at work? Do you feel like you’ve been passed over for a much-deserved promotion, or maybe you just want a little recognition for a job well done? Has the love affair with your job lost its sparkle and shine? (Cue Dolly Parton’s “9 to 5”) 

Regain control of your job with these 5 steps that can help you show up and stand out. 

Set mile markers and keep them in sight

I’m sure this isn’t the first time that you’ve heard it’s good to have goals, and there’s a reason for that. It works! Write down both long-term and short-term goals and post them in sight at your desk. There’s no need to be self-conscious or embarrassed about them, everyone has goals. In fact, they are usually the motivating factor for any of us to get out of bed and go to work in the morning. Having these goals in sight will help to keep you focused during the day on your personal journey and will act as daily motivation. 

Knowing what your goals are is the first step in achieving them. However, you also need to have a system in place on how to complete them. Take a few minutes at the end or beginning of every day and answer “What did/can I do today to get closer to achieving my goal?” 

Work out during the day 

It’s no secret that working out helps to reduce stress, creates serotonin in the brain, and is key to a healthy lifestyle. However, it’s not exactly the easiest thing to fit into our modern workday.  A common misconception is that one needs to decide if she/he wants to eat over lunch or workout instead. However, there are other ways to fit in a workout during the day without having to give up a meal. If you’re lucky enough to work in an office with a treadmill-desk, schedule time to use it regularly during the week. Otherwise, you should opt for walking to meetings where you can. Getting up from your desk will be a refreshing change and can spark creativity. 

Working out is also a great way to work through both professional and personal problems. Need a new strategy for a client? Having issues with a coworker? Just feeling down in general? Nothing that a 20-minute jog can’t clear up!

Believe in yourself 

The first step to success is believing that you can achieve it. After all, if you don’t believe in yourself, how or why would anyone else believe in you? Most successful people credit their triumphs to the fact that they believed in themselves and their own dreams even when no one else did. Self-belief doesn’t come from others, it comes from within and results in others believing in you as well. 

Once you start believing in your own abilities, you will be more confident at work and have a better idea of how to market yourself. Never underestimate your worth, you might just surprise yourself.

Invite feedback

Constructive criticism is never an easy pill to swallow but is a vital part of success. If you don’t already have them in place, schedule quarterly or biannual performance reviews with a supervisor. Being the one to initiate this kind of meeting shows that you care and take pride in your job. This is also a great way to open the door for a promotion or a raise by giving you a platform to talk about all of the added responsibilities that you’ve taken on and your success rate. 

Consider finding a mentor. This should be an individual who holds a position that you someday want (this could be someone at your existing company or someone who works in a completely different industry). Chances are, they have walked in your shoes and can offer advice and tips on how to get where you want to be. They will also be one of your biggest cheerleaders in both the good and the bad. 

Leave your work at the office

So often the picture of success is painted as the “first-in, last-out” mindset. But this mentality could be what’s causing burnout and holding you back. In order to truly achieve success, you must learn how to be productive with the time that you have. One way to do this is to build buffers into your schedule. This will help you to only bite off what you can chew while providing a life vest in case you underestimated the size of a project. LinkedIn CEO, Jeff Weiner, shoots for 60 to 120 minutes a day of unscheduled time in his daily calendar. 

The term “work-life balance” exists for a reason. Having a high-stress level is bad for both your health and for your job performance. Being tired will always reflect in lowering the quality of your work. And let’s be honest, at the end of the day, your boss cares about the end result – not how hard/long you worked on the project. So when the work day is over, go home, both physically and mentally. Take a break, regroup, and be ready to hit it hard again in the morning. 

Pro tip: Be productive, not busy. 

Avoid getting stuck in your inbox. Most successful people don’t check their inbox first thing.  Rather, they start down their to-do lists, answer the urgent emails, work some more, and then come back for the remaining emails later in the day when there’s time. 

These 5 steps, when put into daily practice, will have you shining and succeeding in no time! 

By Miranda Hardesty Hoffpauir 

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