Congratulations, you've got the job. Now, you need to prove yourself in the role, which means staying motivated and on-task.
Here are seven tips to ensure you're a doer, not a procrastinator at work.
1. write a to-do list
When tasks start stacking up, prioritize them with a to-do list. You might want to write the list out twice; first as a stream of consciousness and then organize them in order of importance. Free programs such as Google Keep or Evernote are a great way to manage and keep track of your to-do list.
2. get inspired
Surround yourself with inspirational quotes, people and ideas. Sign up to relevant networking groups and newsletters so that you absorb ‘inspiration’ every day. Use this to inspire others. For long-term work motivation, outline your one, five and 10-year career goals and keep the list close by. This will serve as a reminder of why you're there and what you want to achieve.
3. clear your brain
No one can concentrate for hours on end without a break. In fact, research shows the average human attention span is eight seconds – one second less than a goldfish. To remain focused at work, take a moment to stand up, do a few stretches or walk outside in the fresh air. Regular screen breaks are also vital for productivity and will re-energize you.
4. switch off email reminders
Emails are a constant distraction at work – research shows the average person spends more than two-and-a-half hours a day just responding to emails. When in the midst of a deadline or important task, switch off your inbox and reminders so you can focus. If you struggle with self-control, online software such as Freedom and Anti-Social can shut down your internet access or lock you out of social media for a set period of time.
A cluttered desk and working environment can be a symptom of a disorganized mind and can severely demotivate you. Regularly spring clean your desk; file or recycle paper, throw away rubbish and streamline your desk’s organization.
6. build your personal network
Every workplace has a unique culture and ‘way of working’. Find out who the key people are to help you be productive. Learn as much as you can by asking questions and navigating your way through their internal communication channels. Attend meetings and get to know that one person (hopefully more) who always smiles, has a kind and encouraging word and can help you find the answer you’re looking for.
7. focus on your goal
Regardless of the task you're working on, you should have a clear sense of what success or achievement of that goal looks like. Plan how you will get there and work diligently until you do... while understanding the need for flexibility and agility along the way. If you are a visual person, create a vision board (either at work, at home or on your smartphone or tablet), which includes your work and personal goals, so you can see where you’ll be travelling on your next holiday or the new bike you’ll receive when you reach that milestone – it will help you remember why you are there.