We all have areas in our lives where we could use some improvement, our work life is no exception. When we make the necessary changes we’re often rewarded in promotions or raises, and given positive reviews.
But what about the specifics of your career — like why you’re always showing up exhausted, or can’t seem to focus deeply on what’s most fulfilling? The interpersonal soft skills and self-care are what make the more tangible successes shine.
Here are the first five things that you can do to be a better employee, right now.
1. MAKE A BETTER TO-DO LIST
Whether you’re jotting a list on sticky notes, or like creating typed and well-annotated creation, your to-do game can help you start 2017 right out of the gate. Get out your pen and paper and start practicing your list-making skills by writing these tips down.
2. STOP GLORIFYING “BUSY”
Buying into the “culture of busy” is not only making you dumber, it’s keeping you from your best work. If 2016 felt like it flew by in a constant state of overwork, change that next year — and start bragging about how efficient you are, instead of how many hours you spent chained to a desk.
3. CHANGE YOUR BEDTIME ROUTINE
You can’t be a better employee if you’re still dragging into the office an hour late and half-asleep. Find what makes you jump out of bed like it’s Christmas morning — that could be getting more hours of sleep, setting an alarm for a lot earlier than you need to wake up, setting your alarm to your favorite playlist, etc. Starting a better bedtime routine — like reading an inspiring book or writing down question that need answers — can make you more creative, and less drowsy come 7 a.m.
4. END YOUR PROCRASTINATION HABIT
Show up, do the smallest possible step, just get started. The best way to succeed at anything is to just begin. Start knocking out that to-do list by simply doing.
5. BUT IF YOU MUST, PROCRASTINATE WISELY
Distractions happen. Sometimes, distraction can even be productive. It sounds counterintuitive, but procrastination and productivity can work together, when you’re trying to solve a difficult problem or coax your creativity out of its hiding place. A little busywork, and even Internet surfing, could do the trick. If your boss asks why you’re on Facebook, send him/her this article.