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How to be Happy at Work

stressed at work
(photo by sun dazed, flickr)

Do you have difficult coworkers? Do you feel under-valued? Perhaps you have a patronizing boss, a long commute, and a boring job. Maybe you face demands that can’t be met. Here are some instant ways you can have a better day at work!

In a new book called “Real Happiness at Work…Meditations for Accomplishment, Achievement, and Peace” by Sharon Salzberg, there are some really easy and practical ideas that can make today and every day a better work day for you:

– Don’t pick up the phone on the first ring. Let it ring three times, breathe, then pick it up.

– Uni-task. Focus exclusively on just one thing for at least a small portion of time.

– Put a free minute – or five- on the calendar before every meeting for a short breathing break.

– Notice how you are holding something in your hand – a pen, for instance. Sometimes we exert so much force holding things it makes our tension level worse without even realizing it.

– Before sending an important email, send it to yourself. When you open it as the ‘recipient’ you’ll better notice the tone, implications, and omissions.

– As you sit down at your workspace, gently scan the sensations of your body, from head to toe. Notice areas of tension, and breathe into them to relax.

Sharon Salzberg is one of the leading meditation and spiritual teachers in the world and a contributing editor at O, the Oprah Magazine. In the book, she gives you some great breathing exercises. She also presents the Eight Pillars of Happiness in the Workplace:

– Balance: the ability to tell the difference between who you are and what your job is.

– Concentration: being able to focus dispite distractions around you.

– Compassion: being aware of the fact that you are human…and so are your coworkers and clients.

– Resilience: the ability to recover from defeat, frustration, or failure.

– Communication: understanding that everything we do and say can help make connections with others…or detract from making connections.

– Integrity: bringing your deepest ethical values to your job.

– Meaning: infusing the work you do with relevance for your own personal goals.

– Open Awareness: the ability to see the big picture and not be held back by self-imposed limitations.

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