Going to work for five straight days each week can become monotonous. You can feel like you’re running on a treadmill and it can take all of your energy to just get through the workday — only to do it again the next day.
If you’ve reached that point, it’s a good sign that you need a vacation. But vacation time can be hard to come by, and there’s never enough of it.
A better solution, I think, is to keep yourself refreshed by continually improving your work skills. Doing this has two big benefits: job satisfaction as you enjoy improving the work you do each day, and a better chance at a pay raise.
Just like exercising and regularly and eating well, improving your work skills is a process that needs to be done regularly. Here are three of the biggest ways I’ve found to improve your skills at work continually:
Sharpen the saw
This skill is from the Stephen Covey book “The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People.” It’s a great book and one worth reading for your personal and professional life.
Sharpening the saw means renewing yourself in four areas:
- Physical: Eating, exercising and resting well.
- Social/Emotional: Making connections with others.
- Mental: Learning, reading, writing and teaching.
- Spiritual: Being in nature, meditation, music, art, prayer or service.
These are all big steps, but can be done continually at work and away from work to put balance in your life.
Take for example, self-development expert Trevor McClintock, who writes on his blog about how taking care of yourself will lead to being more productive. Making time for social interaction in your workday is important, McClintock writes, as is having time to daydream to spark creativity. Continue reading