4 tips for improving your performance at work

4 tips for improving your performance at work

To be more efficient, focused and motivated … these are some of the objectives we set for ourselves everyday. And what if performance was linked to being happy at work? Here are 4 tips to improve – or maintain! – both your wellbeing and your performance at work.

1. Happiness at work

According to the self-determination theory*1, we all need daily doses of three “vitamins” to be professionally happy.

  • Autonomy – Do I have room to manouevre at work? Can I do my job while being myself, in a genuine way?
  • A feeling of competence – Do I feel efficient and acknowledged in the pursuit of my objectives?
  • Social affiliation – Are my relationships with my co-workers satisfactory? Do I feel like I am part of a group?

Keep these three key elements in mind; they constitute a solid base for maintaining or even improving your performance.

2. Knowing what your strengths are and using them

Focusing on your strengths – instead of the difficulties – decreases stress, generates energy and by the same token improves your sense of wellbeing and enjoyment day to day. Quite often this positive approach will have a direct impact on your performance at work.

The Via Institute on Character provides a free online questionnaire to identify your signature strengths.

3. Managing energy levels

Time management is something we hear about, but what about energy management? To be more focused and efficient during the day, it is essential to optimize your energy. Here are a few tips:

  • Adopt good sleeping habits
  • Organize your tasks based on the time of day and your energy levels
  • Get some exercise during lunch hour to energize
  • Take a break when needed to recharge your batteries

4. Practice mindfulness meditation

Mindfulness meditation*2 is a good way to eliminate negative emotions that drain your energy. It’s a matter of putting 100% of your attention on something tangible – your breathing for instance – to ground yourself in the present moment. By helping you to focus, meditation is a simple and efficient way to improve your performance at work.

Would you like to learn more about mindfulness meditation? The following website is one of many to help you get started: http://www.mindful.org/meditation/mindfulness-getting-started/

*1Edward L. Deci and Richard M. Ryan, Handbook of Self-Determination Research, University of Rochester.
*2Jon Kabat-Zinn, Arriving at your own door: 108 Lessons in Mindfulness, Hyperion.