4 Ways to Sustain that ‘First Day at Work’ Motivation

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Recall our first day of work: trembling yet mostly thrilled, trying our very best to impress and pursue an error free performance. Unfortunately, as soon as the job honeymoon is over, boredom seeps in and mistakes follow. We are more prone to making mistakes when our attention slips. To save yourself from wrecking your work performance, here are 4 ways to sustain that ‘first day at work’ motivation.

1. Track achievements

It is easy for us to get buried in work and not realise how much we have achieved and grown. An easy cure is to make a list of accomplishments, big or small, and stick it somewhere within your sight. When you get depressed at work, this record stands to recall your triumphs and build self-confidence. It also serves as a perfect work archive, providing great examples to use in your mid-year and end of year reviews, as well as for future employment purposes on your CV. This is especially helpful for remembering those tasks that can be easily forgotten.

2. Recognise the significance of work

Alongside tracking achievements, remember to reflect on where you’ve come from and where you’re heading. Set goals and break them down into bite size chunks. It’s easy to get overwhelmed but break the year into quarters and list what you want to achieve. Try to get buy-in from your boss – you’ll have a series of small wins to look back on and this can avoid your work being taken for granted. Also remember to reward yourself – buy yourself a present or go for a nice meal when you hit your target. Then add these to the list of accomplishments you’re maintaining (see #1!).

3. Acquire new skills

Acquiring new skills not only spices up your work but is also a promising way to boost your CV. Be it training programmes or weekend seminars, you get to associate with new people and learn new things, not to mention it is indeed a decent excuse to take a break from the daily grind of work! On graduate schemes in particular, these excursions can really help to break up the year, in what can otherwise be long months in the office. Make and take the opportunities whenever and wherever you can. You never know what it could lead to and what doors they may open.

4. Recognise the difference between a career and a job

‘Am I just doing a job or building a career?’ Being able to differentiate the two may lead you to ways of boosting work energy. In essence, just doing a job for the sake of it likely won’t keep you motivated to push yourself day to day. “Career builders”, on the other hand, push their boundaries beyond the minimum job description. They identify resume-building skills and positive relationships to put themselves in a better position for promotions, raises and more engaging work. They continuously create mini career goals and achieve them – these changes and challenges keep their work interesting, helping to sustain motivation.

Cherry Chu

Cherry writes about her experiences working in industry

2 min read

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