Talking Points
October 2021

Eight Ways to Raise Your Game

We’re always trying to improve ourselves professionally by setting new goals and finding ways to gain new perspectives with an eye toward greater achievement. Here are some suggestions on how to avoid pitfalls along the way and reach new heights at the same time.

Think Differently
Step back and think about what you do now and how you’d like to change it. Begin by writing it down in one sentence. For example, “I think if I found a clever system to organize my paperwork, I could probably free up a week of my life each year.” If you think about it differently, you might be able to approach it differently, and with better results.

Change Your Actions
Don’t expect to repeat the same actions and get different results. For example, listen to someone more completely before formulating a response. Focus on what’s in front of you versus thinking about the next ten things awaiting your attention. Breaking tasks into bite-size chunks and getting satisfaction from the completion of each chunk can turn things completely around.

Change a Routine
Avoid falling into a repetitive rut by trying one of these simple moves:
Take a different route to work. What you have missed on your daily commute may surprise you.
Vary your departure and arrival times at the office. We aren’t suggesting less time on the job, instead you may spend less time in traffic.
Set a sleep time as well as a wake up time. Most of us set an alarm to get up, but don’t go to bed at the same time. Get more sleep and be more alert.
Alternate office chairs or stand up to do work.

Join a Cause
Nothing can help change your outlook on life more than this. Volunteer at a shelter, a community center for the aged, or a church group supporting children or teens. It not only makes a difference in the community, it really makes you look at the world in a new way.

Look to Others
Network more, meet with old colleagues or even hire a personal life coach. Those with similar skills working in a different sphere may give you the inspiration you need to raise your game. Spend some time with enthusiastic people. It’s easier to emulate someone who’s already where you want to be.

Make a List
Write down several things you think you might enjoy doing. Not that you necessarily need to do it this second, but pick an activity that appeals most and commit to doing it in the coming week.

Bribe Yourself
What can you place at the top of the bank that will motivate you? Is it the promise of a long soak in a bath, an hour that you can spend working out, or a piece of chocolate? Completion of the task before you will be all the more rewarding!

Take Time to Re-energize
Lastly, and maybe even most importantly, don’t fail to have a life outside of the office. It can be hard to turn things off, but obsessing on your work 24/7 can have disastrous results personally and professionally.
Any time of the year is a good time to re-evaluate your habits and perspectives. Don’t wait for the next New Year’s Resolutions to roll around. Take action now.

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