Its time to harness your ability to achieve and take control of your path to success and fulfillment. Follow these steps and make it happen!
1. Stop complaining.
It is easy to dwell on all the reasons our career, lives, and families are challenging, unreasonable, or stressful. Stop making excuses. Stop blaming everyone and anything (including yourself). Instead, take control and change your situation for the better. Every decision you make has a result. Every behavior you exhibit matters. Hold yourself accountable and make positive changes!
2. Take risks and challenge authority.
The most successful relationships are built on mutual respect. Instead of saying “yes,” when given an assignment, carefully consider business implications. Don’t be afraid to offer ideas and solutions that may seem against the norm. Your ability to take initiative, generate new ideas, and deliver thoughtful counsel will earn you respect and grow your role beyond that of a tactician and into a true strategist.
3. Impact change as much as possible.
Focus on projects, and priorities with the highest opportunities for meaningful results. Don’t get distracted by process or minutia.
4. Avoid drama.
You are never going to win an argument with someone who isn’t rational. Instead, turn the demand or rant your boss or client spouted into a calm and positive opportunity. Don’t get defensive or seek validation; overcome your need to be right or prove a point. Walk away from situations that truly aren’t worth your energy. This includes office gossip.
5. Admit you’re human.
Take responsibility for your errors. Admitting you are wrong and working to rectify the situation in a thoughtful manner builds camaraderie and encourages an honest approach to business.
6. Maintain perspective.
If you aren’t doing life-saving surgery, fighting a war, or solving the debt crisis, you shouldn’t act like everything is “the end of the world.” Your job, family or academic life may feel overwhelming sometimes, but although you do may be important and meaningful, maintain perspective and lose the self-importance.
7. Get over it!
Your boss or client criticizes your work, or worse, you. Not everyone is going to love your work all the time. Your openness to suggestions or criticisms and ability to learn from them, and not dwell on the negative, will serve you well.
8. Turn off the devices.
Being accessible 24-hours a day not only kills work/life balance, but it also sets unrealistic and unreasonable expectations. Truly shutting down for even a few hours a day will lessen your stress and help you recharge your body and your brain.
9. Consider your legacy.
We are all too young to think about our long-term legacies, yet take a moment to think about how you wish to be remembered and reflect on how you are living your life. If you honestly consider how you are perceived by colleagues, friends, and family, you may change your behavior, relationships, and perhaps even your professional path.
10. Be benevolent.
Volunteer, take on a pro-bono client, and consider building your corporate social responsibility offerings or career path. Working to improve society should be an element of everyone’s work and lives, regardless of the profession.