Happy at Work
It is important that you and your employees are happy at work, because if they are not happy, then they are not as productive.
Your organisation runs best when the people in it are working in cooperative, happy teams. They need to form teams that possess a "positive mental attitude" and can maintain it, especially during tough times.
Your organisation will not be at its best if the people in it are working in unhappy, conflicted teams. If the teams are NON happy teams, meaning, that there is too much cynicism, pessimism, fear, anger, conflict or stress, then their productivity will fall.
As a result of falling productivity, there will be a tendency for more fear, pessimism, anger and stress, and so begins a negative self reinforcing cycle.
Create a positive self-reinforcing cycle
If we could create a positive, happy team spirit, then that team would work better and over time, would begin to produce better results. Those better results would be a source of encouragement and would motivate the team, which would make the team happier and more productive.
How do you create such a happy team? Happiness is not a "thing". It cannot be manufactured like you can manufacture a bicycle.
Happiness is a state of mind. It can be cultivated. You can cultivate a greater degree of happiness by working on the various components that tend to lead to a positive state of mind.
Here are the components of happiness and a positive work atmosphere
- A pleasing work environment free from extremes.
- A definite, worthwhile and valuable goal, to which a person can aim.
- A workable plan of action that is likely to produce positive results.
- A set of colleagues who use language to encourage each other: A set of colleagues who refrain from using words in ways that trigger cynicism, pessimism, fear, anger, conflict or stress.
- A set of health habits that tend to create physical vibrancy. And an absence of health habits that tend to cause illness.
Let us look at each in turn.
1. A pleasing work environment free from extremes
If your work station is too cold, too hot, too noisy, then it detracts from your ability to concentrate on your work. You need to expend mental effort blocking out the noise, or the cold. And that added mental effort takes its toll on your ability to produce the results you need.
On the other hand, if your work environment is at the right temperature, if there is enough room, enough light, enough ventilation and not too much noise, then it is easy for you to concentrate and get the job done.
If you are in a position to influence the conditions of your team, then do all you can to make them physically comfortable; or at least, NOT uncomfortable.
2. A definite, worthwhile and valuable goal, at which the person can aim
It says in the Bible, "Where there is no vision, people perish". This means that in order to be happy people need to be trying to do something that they regard as worthwhile.
Goals make people happier. People are happy when they feel successful.
They feel successful when they achieve a goal or when they are involved in trying to achieve a goal. If you have no clear goal, then you don't feel happy. You feel purposeless.
Goals make people happier. You need to keep the goal in front of you, mentally.
And if you have a team you need to talk about the goal; think about the goal; ask them about the goal. And reward them for their achievements.
If you develop a goal focused mentality in yourself and the others, that will tend to increase the sense of happiness.
3. A workable plan of action that is likely to produce positive results
- A goal without a plan is one thing.
- But a goal with a plan is something much better.
If you can give your team a goal and show them exactly how they can achieve the goal, by reference to a terrific plan, then, your team will be happy.
If they have no plan, or if they doubt the plan is any good, then, they won't be happy.
It is a good idea to get the team involved in building the plans, (to the degree to which that is possible). Planning ahead is a motivator. No planning ahead leads to uncertainty and doubt.
Weak or non-existent plans cause unhappiness.
4. A set of colleagues who use language to encourage each other and who refrain from using words in ways that trigger antagonism
This is the most difficult one for you to manage. You need to keep an eye on the language being used in the team.
If people are lax with their language, if they speak to each other harshly, or with too much sarcasm, or with derision, or with bitterness, or with cynicism, or fear, then this will trigger negative emotional responses, which will begin to build up in the minds of the various members of the team.
If this process continues for too long, then the relationships are strained too much and they will eventually fracture. Then the team fails to act as a team should. They start fighting each other. The performance drops and the "negative self reinforcing cycle" becomes apparent.
You need to monitor the use of language.
Please pick up early on signs that things are going awry. And take action to nip any conflicts, in the bud. Don't let conflicts grow into monsters.
Even better, consciously use your language to positively inspire other people towards the good end of the emotional scale. You can do this by:
- Talking about the goals.
- Talking about the plans.
- Talking about how great it will be when we achieve our goals.
- Giving appreciation for good work.
- Offer genuine compliments when you see the chance to do so.
- Be quick to smile.
- Be slow to lose your temper.
- Work at consciously speaking to people in ways that will tend to trigger a positive emotional response.
Why would you do that? Three reasons:
- To see if you can. To see if you have the skill to raise people's spirits, simply by the skillful use of your language.
- Because it is a nice thing to do. If you can make people feel good, simply by using the right words, then why not do it?
- If you can master the skill of making people feel good, simply by using the right words, then you will become a valuable company asset; you will tend to earn more money for yourself, your family and your organisation.
5. A set of health habits that tend to create physical health. And an absence of health habits that tend to cause illness
It is hard to be sick and happy at the same time. It is easy to be healthy and happy at the same time.
Some sickness is due to environmental factors and bacterial infections. But much sickness is the product of poor health habits.
Many people don't eat well. They eat the wrong things. They drink too much. They take drugs and too much medication.
Did you know that some people even try to make themselves happy by drinking alcohol?
Happiness is fundamentally a mental state
You need a healthy brain to feel happy. And sick brains cannot produce healthy brain waves. Healthy brain waves only come from healthy brains.
Toxic, poisoned brains are unhappy brains. Ask any alcoholic if he is happy. You'll find he isn't. Even apparently happy drunks, aren't happy.
If you want to be happy, keep your physical and mental health habits clean.
You will find more happiness at work if you did the following three things:
- Eat well.
- Sleep a lot.
- And exercise a bit.
How to be happy at work:
- Make the physical environment as pleasant as you can make it.
- Set valuable goals.
- Build practical and detailed plans.
- Keep your language positive, optimistic and friendly.
- Stay physically strong and healthy.