Stop Living For 5pm On Friday

A simple guide to finding joy and peace in what you get up to do every single day.

For many years I’ve been so guilty of this. Your mood and joy are determined by how far or near you are from Friday 5 pm. At this point less than 24 hours away, so you can understand my mood!

But have you ever thought about it, as soon as it passes, we are furthest away from it yet again. And so the cycle continues.

We all have to work, unless you are part of the lucky few who can live off your father’s inheritance (do call me up). As economic growth slows, the options are limited to what exactly you can or choose to do for that paycheque. Even though it may seem like you have no choice in the matter, you still have to wake up and go to the same job, for the same 8 hours or more to earn your keep.

There are a few ways you can make it a bit more pleasant.

1. Get to know the people you work with

Not just a good morning, but actually going to them, introducing yourself and explain what you do. Listen to their story, you may find that you have similar interests or know people in the same circles. Don’t just add them on Facebook.

2. Wake up early, get to work early

Are you one of those who perpetually sneaks in at 9h05 and mumbles something about traffic? You know those ones. And inevitably at 16h45 you start packing up and are always one of the first to leave. I know someone who keeps his laptop open on his desk, music playing in the background but he is long gone.

3. Exercise first thing in the morning

It is the cheapest, most effective way to start your day feeling great and on top of the world. You get to your desk ready to take on the day. Since we are still at the time of new year’s resolutions and goals, there is no reason why you can’t start today.

It is really the single, most beneficial life change you can make in your life. It will pay dividends for years to come.

4. Don’t open Social Media first thing in the morning

I was going to say no Social Media at work, but I do realise that for some professions you may need to be on there for work purposes. However, check it after lunch. You wouldn’t miss anything.

You don’t want to know that so and so went rock climbing on the weekend, and what did you do? It affects your mood and it’s especially bad for you first thing in the morning.

Its aim is to throw you off balance, to constantly compare yourself with others, and it fills you with self-doubt, envy and feelings of not matching up. You can really do without it. I have for the last 24 months.

5. Slow down as you finish your day and prepare for tomorrow

As you finish your day, it’s good to take stock of what you have accomplished for the day and then take a few minutes to plan your day tomorrow. Write down tasks that you’d like to do and let that stay on your desk so you have it handy first thing in the morning. Of course, it can be digital as well.

6. Take pride in what you do for a living

There is honour in what you get up to do every day. Our parents have done it for generations. Not everyone is cut out to be an entrepreneur. And that’s ok. If you are not entirely satisfied with where you are and what you are doing, now is the time for change.

It could be a subtle mental shift away from where you are, to where you see yourself. Looking out for those opportunities. Getting skilled in that area. Talking to people and building networks would be good too. You want everyone close to you to know that you are working towards your dream job and business. Once it’s out there in the open, you will see opportunities coming back just at the right time.

‘And, when you want something, all the universe conspires in helping you to achieve it.’ — Paulo Coelho

7. Be grateful that you have a job

In some developing countries, someone will be grateful that you let them shine your shoes. You don’t know how lucky you are to have a job (maybe not the best one), but a job nonetheless, where you are certain of a paycheque at the end of the month.

When you are not breaking too much of a sweat, you can still eat dinner with your wife and kids in the evening, there is money to buy the things you want, see the people you want to see, I think it’s a good time to be quiet and remember just how fortunate you are.

8. Time passes so quickly

Things change, people change, situations change. The job you hate so much right now, you may desperately wish you had at a different time. People get retrenched, companies are bought and sold, sometimes all you are is just a number.

I have a friend who told me that they are retrenching people at their work and all she was waiting for was the day that she would be called. Can you imagine the anxiety? Luckily, she found another job before that day came. Some others, sadly, were not so lucky.

Life is short.

Count your blessings.

Be grateful for what you have.

Celebrate the small victories.

Create a positive mindset.

Laugh more.

Be where you are, for we all pass here only once.

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