Making your career more enjoyable
Most of us entrepreneurs spend a lot of time on our careers. The work we do is such a huge part of our lives that it may seem all-consuming at times. That’s why it’s important to find ways to incorporate joy into our careers, not just for own benefit but for everyone we come in contact with.
“Fun is one of the most important — and underrated — ingredients in any successful venture. If you’re not having fun, then it’s probably time to call it quits and try something else.” Richard Branson
Now I’m going to mention something about me that you may find a little unusual, but that’s okay because I thrive on being unusual. If I am invited to play a round of golf or I have an opportunity to do business (which usually means showing or listing a house), what do you think I will do? After 34 years in the real estate industry, my choice is always to list or sell a house. Why? Because my career brings me joy. It’s not just the income this career produces; I get excited about being able to help people make what is usually the biggest investment of their life. It is a privilege and an incredible responsibility to do this.
Anybody can choose to make their career more enjoyable. There are many different ways to accomplish this, but I can only tell you what I have experienced myself. Every morning I make a choice to be excited to start my workday. In other words, making my career fun and enjoyable starts with my attitude. Throughout the day, I greet each person with a smile and I only make positive statements. Complaining or being negative doesn’t go hand-in-hand with fun.
“Never, ever underestimate the importance of having fun.” Randy Pausch
Making your career more enjoyable is not just about you. It’s also about the people you meet along the way. It’s about giving somebody a compliment and watching their reaction. It’s about making everyone you see in person or come in contact with feel important. It’s about helping people. How do you feel when you make someone else feel good? How do you feel when you know that you might have said something that changed somebody’s day for the better? I’ll bet you feel pretty good.
If you choose to enjoy yourself during your next sales call, your prospective customer will feel comfortable and have a good experience. Having the mindset of just going out and having fun also shows people that you’re very confident about what you do.
My favorite airline is Southwest. Why? Because not only do they make it easy and convenient for me to fly with them, they also make it fun. When Southwest’s founder Herb Kelleher shared his goals for his new airline, one of his top three goals was to make it fun. He wanted to make it fun not only for the passengers but also for the employees. This is one of the main reasons I prefer Southwest over other airlines — because they make each trip enjoyable.
“You gotta have fun. Regardless of how you look at it, we’re playing a game. It’s a business, it’s our job, but I don’t think you can do well unless you’re having fun.” Derek Jeter
Are you having fun in your career, and is it enjoyable? If your answer is anything but yes, stop and ask yourself what you could start doing differently to change your answer to yes. If there are things you can’t change about your job, such as not respecting your boss or sharing your company’s philosophy, then maybe it’s time to move on. However, if you can make your career more enjoyable, do it! This might include having a new attitude, establishing a new routine, setting goals, being a better co-worker, or not complaining.
Maybe just one small adjustment or one simple change in your workday will be all it takes for you to find joy in your career. You have the ability to do anything you set your mind to do. Your career is a very important part of your life, so make it a priority to be happy each day. Not only will that choice transform your own life but it will also make things better for the people you are closest to. Make the choice now to create an enjoyable career.
If not now, then when? And if not you, then who?