How To Feel Happier At Work With 5 Weird Tips That Are Totally Doable
Most of us living in today's society have to work at least five days a week, eight hours a day. We spend so much time in the office that sometimes it's easy to lose track of finding ways to be happier at work amidst all of those daily tasks and goals. The truth is, though, that if we aren't happy at our workplace, it can negatively affect other aspects of our lives. In fact, according to the Huffington Post, one study in the Journal of Occupational and Organizational Psychology showed that workplace stress can be linked to depression and a weaker immune system. That being said, not everyone is able to switch jobs just because we have a pesky boss or the hours are too long. We have responsibilities, bills to pay, things to learn, and not being happy 24/7 isn't a sure indicator that we should put in our two weeks and head out.
"Work is called work for a reason," says therapist and motivator Leigh Weinraub to Bustle over email. "It can often be a grind. No matter what field you're in, some days are just going to stir an inner battle. It takes a lot of grit, patience, focus, support and perseverance to battle through it."
If your workplace is absolutely miserable, by all means, you should look for a new job and get out of there pronto, but just because you sometimes get a little glum in the hustle and bustle of your everyday work life doesn't mean you're stuck in a rut forever. If you do feel like some days you could use a little happiness boost or shift in attitude, try one of the below tips that can help you feel more content with your work or your job.
1. Get Outside
"Most offices, and therefore jobs, are set indoors. This is universally uninspiring for the mind, body, and soul," says Weinraub. "Break the day up with sporadic trips in the outdoors."
A study from the journal Ecopsychology found that people who took walks outside experienced less stress and depression.
"Even five minutes of inhaling nature, and exhaling responsibility could lead to a lighter more enjoyable work life," says Weinraub.
2. Put Up Pictures By Your Desk
If you're going to be at your desk all day, you might as well surround yourself with things that make you happy.
"Put up pictures around your desk or workspace of places or things that light you up inside, like your favorite animal, a place in the world you find beautiful or serene, a person that you love," says positive psychology expert and wellness coach Pax Tandon to Bustle over email. "Research shows that the same brain centers light up when we think about a place or thing we love as if we're actually experiencing it."
3. Make Yourself Laugh
Watch a funny YouTube video or play a harmless prank on your closest coworker — anything that puts a smile on your face will do. "Laughter is one of the best forms of increasing happiness and positive emotions," says Tandon.
And don't feel bad if weird online videos are your guilty pleasure; a study from Indiana University found that viewing videos of cats helped boost energy levels and positive emotions.
4. Switch Up Your Routine
"Walking into the same environment, seeing the same people, and doing similar tasks can lead to soul depletion and burnout," says Weinraub. "While repetition and routine can often provide a sense of calm and structure for our internal system, it often is the biggest culprit for boredom."
Go into work at different times during the week, socialize with different people on your lunch break, or take on extra tasks that are more stimulating for you.
5. Foster Closer Relationships With Your Co Workers
"People who have a 'work bestie,' or someone they feel really close to at work, regardless of the job, are much happier at work," says Tandon. Research from Harvard University backs this up. One study showed that having a close relationship with someone at work boosted employee satisfaction by 50 percent, so don't hesitate to befriend the person in the cubicle next to you.
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