You spend a sizable portion of your waking hours at work. So why not try to optimize that time, happiness-wise?
You spend a sizable portion of your waking hours at work. So why not try to optimize that time, happiness-wise? You’ve probably heard these tips before, but have you tried them *all*? Didn’t think so.
**Perk up your workspace.** If possible (and within reason) decorate your workspace with objects that make you happy — a photo of your beloved, a plant, a sunny yellow pencil cup.
**Get organized.** Most humans are happier in clean and organized surroundings. You will be, too.
**Eat better.** Bring, or buy, a tasty and nutritious lunch and/or snacks. A healthier body is a happier body — and mind.
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**Smile.** Sounds simplistic, but it’s proven that acting a certain way leads us to feel that way. Acting happy will make your brain start to think happy.
**Cut the rut.** Shake things up by doing routine parts of your job in a different order or at a different time. Or find a new fun way to do an old boring thing.
**Make a list.** Each night before falling asleep, identify three things at work you’re grateful for. Recognizing the good that already exists in our lives makes us happier.
**Move.** If you work mostly sitting, look for ways to incorporate physical activity into your day. Take the stairs instead of the elevator. Take a brisk walk at lunch, preferably outside.
**Find a mentor.** No matter what your job, you can find someone to advise you, listen to you, help you solve problems and give you a sense of perspective.
**Seek recognition.** If you are doing great work and no one knows, it’s as bad as if you’re constantly tooting your own horn. If you’ve invented a filing system that saves paper, say, write a short memo to your boss describing it.
**Keep learning.** Read those professional journals lying around the break room. Volunteer to cross-train with co-workers. Sign up for continuing-education classes.
We are often told that success leads to happiness, but it’s the other way around: Happiness leads to success. So get happy!
Karen Burns is the author of The Amazing Adventures of Working Girl: Real-Life Career Advice You Can Actually Use. Email her at firstname.lastname@example.org.