Five Ways to Have Fun at Work

According to Gallup “of the approximately 100 million people in America who hold full-time jobs, 30 million (30%) are engaged and inspired at work, so we can assume they have a great boss.”  It’s true, the biggest reason people are dissatisfied and leave a job is their boss and the reverse is true.

A lot of attention is paid to managers’ responsibility to create a conducive environment for people to do their best work.  True.  That’s important.  I invite us to flip that.  What’s an individual’s responsibility to “do what they love and love what they do?”  Knowing we all face challenging work environments, here are five keys to making work fun for yourself, in any company culture and with any manager.

#1. Be a Beginner

Wake up every morning willing to let go of all that fantastic intellect you bring and ready to challenge what you know.  Feeling stuck at work is typically about not feeling like we are growing and learning.  Apply a “beginners mind” and make it an internal game with yourself.

#2. Be Selfish

Most company cultures strive to create a “we” and “us” environment.  Yes, that’s a lofty goal.  The path to an authentically thriving team environment must start with caring for yourself.  Be clear about what you want at work, name it and claim it.  No one else will, so it might as well be you.  Ask yourself in any situation “what’s in it for me?”  Remember what they tell us on airplanes: “put your oxygen mask on first before helping a child or person next to you.”  Redefine selfish as being self-responsible.

#3. Be at Choice

The moment you feel stuck, forced to be or do something that doesn’t resonate with you make a choice.  Is the situation worth your energy?  If no—move on.  If yes, what can you learn in the situation?  Is it really about you or the other person?  Are you willing to take a radically different approach?  Your choices are endless.  In the end, you are always at choice about how you react or respond to a situation.  

#4. Be You

Oscar Wilde said “Be yourself; everyone else is already taken.”  How often do you consciously recognize that you are comparing yourself to others?  It’s likely not something you do consciously.  Try it for a day.  Notice when you get angry or sad.  Notice when you compare, condemn or criticize a person or situation.  Then let go of what’s not yours to do and be you.

#5. Be Compassionate

If you believe we are all at choice on how we react or respond to a situation, what’s stopping you from being compassionate?  Creating or participating in work drama is totally your choice.  To be clear, being compassionate doesn’t mean taking a “soft” approach.  Speak your truth and still do it with the best interest of the other person and yourself in mind.

Thank you for reading these five simple and not always easy keys to making work fun for you.  Go do it yourself today and share your experience with others here.  If you choose, sign-up for our mailing list, share this with others and commit to thriving together.

Sign-up for my infrequent newsletter.