6 Hacks To Be Happier At Work, Backed By Science

 / 

,
6 Hacks To Be Happier At Work, Backed By Science

Do you want to be happier at work? Who wouldn’t, right? All of us want a career that is fulfilling and exciting.

As we spend most of our day at work, it becomes a necessity that we feel happy working, not just for better productivity, but for our overall mental health.

Why being happier at work is important

Most jobs have slumps. Most jobs have some pros and cons that offer us the right opportunities and challenges to enhance our professional skills and forward our career. However, despite how great your job may be, it is likely that you will feel ‘hump day’ blues at some level. Perhaps, this is why more than 50% of U.S. workers feel they are unhappy and unsatisfied with their jobs.

Did you know you will spend 90,000 hours at work during your lifetime? For many of us, almost a third of the day is spent working. So it only makes sense to pursue a job that makes us feel happier at work. We want to make sure that our time at the office counts and we feel fulfilled, satisfied and pleased.

Is your job affecting your mood? Read Are You Feeling Depressed At Work?

Happiness matters

“How we spend our days is, of course, how we spend our lives.” – Annie Dillard

Unhappiness and dissatisfaction at work can seriously affect your focus, motivation, productivity, and lead to communication challenges. On a personal level, it may significantly increase your anxiety and stress levels and result in various physical and mental health issues.

Studies have found that the unhappier you are at work, the more you will be unproductive and slack off. It can also affect the mood and productivity of your co-workers and impact your emotional health significantly. Research also indicates that being happy with your work makes you less likely to quit your job, communicate better with others and be better able to satisfy customers & clients.

An extensive research on productivity & happiness, by the Saïd Business School, University of Oxford, found that employees were 13% more productive when they reported to be happy. The study gathered data from 1,800 call-center employees over a period of 6 months. It revealed that when the workers reported as being happier, their productivity, attendance and customer satisfaction improved.

Do you feel burnt out at work? Read 5 Signs You Are Experiencing Workplace Burnout

How to be happier at work

Happier workers make better leaders and workers. They are more pleasing to work with and they add to the overall work environment and culture. But how can you be happy at work? As you struggle with your mental health while attaching another spreadsheet to your email, how can you be personally happy & professionally productive?

If you like what you do and your paycheck does justice to the effort you put in, then there are some science-backed ways that can help you find more happiness at the workplace.

1. Feel good in the morning

Starting the day with positivity can actually help you feel a lot happier at work. The fact is, the way we feel in the morning affects our mood, thoughts and emotions for the rest of the day. A study by Nancy Rothbard Ph.D. of University of Pennsylvania, evaluated the moods, attitudes and performances of customer service executives. The research found that workers who had a positive attitude and were generally in a good mood in the morning reported to be more productive throughout the day. Moreover, they also had better interactions with clients.

So if you wish to be happier with your work, then make an effort to do what you enjoy in the morning as it will make you feel better on a personal level. It may be going to the gym or a walk, gardening or something as simple as enjoying your cuppa joe.

2. Improve relationship with co-workers

According to a 2016 survey on job satisfaction & employee engagement by the annual Society for Human Resource Management, it was found that your relationship with your colleagues was the most important factor that led to your professional happiness.

Moreover, helping your co-workers can also significantly contribute to making you feel happier at work. A study by La Follette School of Public Affairs found that employees in their 30s reported feeling happier by helping others at work, when asked about it 30 years later. Another study on employee happiness found that employees who are generally happy at the workplace tend to help their co-workers 33% more than employees who feel unhappy.

However, you don’t need to go out of your way to help a fellow employee. Simply ask your favorite teammate if they need a hand on their project or grab a cup of coffee from them. Although, it might be a bit challenging on a daily basis, doing this intentionally can have an excellent positive impact on your mindset.

Do you have a toxic colleague? Read Toxic Coworkers: Dealing With 7 Most Dangerous Work Personalities

3. Pause and breathe

When you feel things are getting too hard to handle at work, simply take a deep breath and pause for a while. Be mindful about your environment and observe what thoughts and emotions you’re feeling in the present moment. According to neuroscientist Dr. Emiliana Simon-Thomas, “Taking a deep breath as often as you can at work, or having some kind of extra awareness of what’s going on in your own psychological milieu, is so important.

Simon-Thomas, science director of the UC Berkeley Greater Good Science Center, believes that mindful practices can prove to be highly beneficial. Habits like deep breathing during breaks or before big meetings can calm your mind and prevent toxic thoughts and rumination. This can also help you reduce your stress and anxiety levels.

“Focus on your breath when you’re in a moment of reactivity, when you’re tempted to perhaps yell at someone about something they did that irritates you. Notice the urge, get curious about it, feel the joy of letting go and repeat,” she added.

So the next time you feel like losing your cool and yelling at a co-worker, stop for a moment, take a deep breath and observe your thoughts and emotions before reacting to the heat of the moment.

4. Learn new skills

According to a 2015 Gallup poll, around 51% of workers in the U.S. reported they are “not engaged” in their jobs. The survey also found that 32% of U.S. adult workers reported being  “actively engaged”, while 17% reported they are “actively disengaged” in their jobs. 

If you feel you’re not actively engaged with your work, then you’re probably bored with what you do on a daily basis. Doing the same thing repeatedly can make us feel bored and surely sap our energy and happiness. If you feel your happiness at work is affected due to boredom, then the best thing you can do is learn a new skill. Depending on what you do for a living, you can always learn new skills to improve your efficiency and give your resume a much-needed boost. In fact, a research paper published, by authors David Cutler and Adriana Lleras-Muney, in the National Bureau of Economic Research, found that education and learning can significantly affect our well being and morality.

So make sure you learn new skills and challenge yourself to feel higher levels of job satisfaction and happier at work. You may choose to enrol in an online course or ask your supervisor about employee learning & development programs in your organization. This will motivate you to work harder and have a positive effect on your mindset and attitude.

Want to get better at your job? Read Six Ways To Improve Productivity At Work

5. Get out of the office

Do you take lunch alone at work? If you want to be happier at the workplace, then it’s time to head out of the office and catch up with some friends while you have lunch outside. Our minds need to recharge itself as much as our bodies need food to fuel itself. A change of setting, environment and people can prove highly helpful. 

According to a 2013 study, eating alone at your desk can lead to feelings of unhappiness while eating out with friends can be highly relaxing. The research article by Prof. Werner Sommer, Department of Psychology, Humboldt-University at Berlin found that “a restaurant meal with a social component may be more relaxing than a meal eaten alone in a plain setting and may reduce cognitive control.

6. Practice gratitude

Ending your day with the simple practice of being grateful can work wonders for your mood and psyche. Due to negativity bias, we are much more affected by negative outcomes than positive outcomes of the same intensity. Studies have found that negative setbacks at work were 3 times more powerful than the impact of positive progress. This makes it harder for us to experience happiness at work.

However, we can counter this negativity bias and program our minds to look at the positive more often simply by practicing gratitude on a daily basis. All you need to do is remember, appreciate and write down about the good things in your day. Evidence shows that being grateful can make us more optimistic and experience joy more often in life.

Can being grateful transform your life? Read 5 Ways Gratitude Can Change Your Life

So make sure to adopt a gratitude ritual and practice it at the end of your work day regularly. You can also choose to share your positive thoughts and emotions from the day with a loved one. Studies have found that sharing positive experiences “using a diary method” or with another person makes us feel better and improves how we feel about our life.

Choose to be happier at work

We all want a job that makes us feel excited about waking up and rushing to work. But that seldom happens. For most of us, the reality is we drag ourselves to work in the morning and come back home in the evening completely drained of physical, mental and emotional energy.

However, if we wish to be happier at work, then we will need to be intentional about it. We need to take deliberate efforts and the methods mentioned above can enable us to do just that. As you can see all the 6 methods I shared above have been proven to be effective by science and can work wonders for you, if you are aware and just put in some effort.

Happiness is not something that is too hard to experience. Happiness is our default setting, regardless of where you spend your day. We simply need to be conscious about choosing happiness.

Want more? Read 8 Signs You Should Quit Your Job

Here’s an interesting video that you may find helpful:

6 Hacks To Be Happier At Work, Backed By Science

— Share —

— About the Author —

Response

  1. Birute Avatar
    Birute

    Yes,it is very important to focus on positivenes in the morning,stretch,do the morning moves like shower or breathing,then light breakfast with fruit juice or water and work relationships,try not to gossip,do not be personally frank with people speaking about your relationships,money,stay talkative ,but nothing personal about anybody,never speak about achievements as people are envious,they think they do better than you.

Leave a Reply



Up Next

The Role of Childhood Trauma in Serial Killers: A Deep Dive Into 5 Serial Killers and Their Upbringing

Role of Childhood Trauma in Serial Killers: Case Examples

The public’s fascination with the mystery surrounding serial killers has long sparked conjecture regarding the motivations behind people’s horrific behavior. The role of childhood trauma in serial killers has received a lot of attention, despite the fact that the reasons underlying their actions are complex.

In this blog, we explore the childhood experiences in serial killers to gain insight into their terrifying world. We aim to uncover the intricate relationship between pathology and upbringing by delving into the trauma in serial killers and unfavorable conditions that shaped these individuals’ early years.

This will illuminate the shadowy pasts of some of the most infamous murderers in history. Come along with us as we venture into the darkest recesses of the human brain, where the roots of violence are planted.



Up Next

What Netflix’s ‘Baby Reindeer’ Teaches About Dealing With Online Stalkers

Dealing With Online Stalkers? Important Baby Reindeer Lessons

“Baby Reindeer”, the British miniseries, hit on Netflix, highlights the horrifying truth of having an online stalker. Ever faced anything similar? If yes, read on to know more!

Baby Reindeer Netflix show is based on Richard Gadd’s autobiographical one-person play and tells the story of Donny, an unsuccessful comedian who becomes the target of Martha, a woman he meets at a local bar.

More or less 7.5 million individuals are cyberstalked each year based on the latest figures. This is also known as tech stalking, and about 80% all stalking victims experienced it while 67% were subject to traditional forms of stalking too.



Up Next

Are You Struggling To Manage Your Emotional Reactions? 3 Important Steps To Take

Managing Emotional Reactions: Effective Steps To Take

If you are someone who struggles to control or manage your emotional reactions, then you have come to the right place. This article is going to talk about some of the best things you can do when it comes to controlling emotional reactions or emotional reactivity.

KEY POINTS

Emotional reactions are based on mental habits you can change if you want to, believe you can, and can commit to the steps.

Even when you know a new mental habit will relieve your stress, you must consistently override your protective brain while forming the new habit.

Start with small steps so you can see your progress and celebrate your successes.



Up Next

How To Become Less Anxious: 9 Tips To Deal With Anxiety

How To Become Less Anxious: Tips To Deal With Anxiety

Are you tired of feeling overwhelmed, trapped in the clutches of anxiety? Do you want a life filled with tranquility? If so, let’s find out how to become less anxious.

What Exactly Is Anxiety?

Anxiety is a universal human emotion that can manifest as a persistent and overwhelming feeling of fear, worry, or unease. 

However, it’s important to recognize that anxiety is a normal part of life and most people experience it occasionally. When anxiety becomes persistent, excessive and a constant companion, hindering our daily activities and o



Up Next

7 Essential Psychotic Episode Signs You Should Not Ignore

Essential Signs Of A Psychotic Episode You Should Not Ignore

Suppose you’re binge-watching your favorite TV show, while digging into a tub of salted caramel ice cream, and everything seems normal and perfect. But then suddenly, out of the blue, you start to feel as if your reality is unraveling, like a rogue thread from a well-worn sweater? Let me tell you, this maybe one of many psychotic episode signs.

You might be thinking, “wait a minute, psychotic?” I know these words may sound a bit intimidating and scary, but stick around for a while and I will explain everything. This article is going to do a deep dive in the major psychotic episode signs, causes of psychosis, the different types of psychosis, and also, what is a psychotic episode.

So, are you ready to navigate this uncharted territory? Let’s get started then. First let’s talk about what is a psychotic episode.



Up Next

7 Incredible Benefits of Art Therapy for Children You Should Know!

Helpful Benefits of Art Therapy for Children You Must Know

Art therapy for children is a treatment method that helps children who suffer from trauma, emotional disorders, or other developmental problems to be healed and find themselves.

Benefits of art therapy for children may also be seen as one of the best channels of communication which surpasses language barriers to reveal the innermost aspects of human feelings.

Children learn how to draw, paint, sculpt, and engage in other forms of art under the guidance of an art therapist to express their thoughts, emotions, and experiences.

The following ten amazing benefits of art therapy for children that shows how art can make a huge difference in children’s lives. So without further ado let us get into it!



Up Next

How To Practice Mindful Eating Like A Pro: 10 Habits For Healthier Living

How to Practice Mindful Eating: Mindful Eating Habits

Have you ever found yourself mindlessly devouring a bag of chips or indulging in a whole tub of ice cream without even realizing it? In our fast-paced and hectic lives, it’s easy to fall into the trap of binge eating. This is why it is crucial to learn how to practice mindful eating.

Mindful eating is a practice that encourages us to savor each bite, reconnect with our body’s signals, and truly appreciate the nourishment we receive. It can help you break free from this cycle and build a healthier relationship with food.

So let’s explore what is mindful eating, what are the benefits of mindful eating and how to develop mindful eating habits into your daily life.