Opinion Editorials

Actionable ways to break your bad work habits

senior-level talent

(EDITORIAL) Have you kept up with your new year’s resolutions? It’s time to evaluate your commitments and resolve to break your bad work habits (we’ll tell you how).

We all want to be better

At the start of every year, we commit to resolutions – eat healthier, work out more, tweet less. Then, May rolls around and we’ve failed some (okay, many) of our resolutions. But it doesn’t have to be that way. This is the time of year to evaluate our progress and correct the course before year’s end.

It is important to tend to our professional lives, just as much as it is to commit to a healthier personal life. It can be easy to broadly say, “I’m going to be a better employee this year.” Okay…but how do you execute that?

Resolve to resolve

One of the best ways to get a jump on this is to eradicate bad habits that you’ve set in place for yourself. A good way to get a start on this is by reflecting on the year before and any continuous actions you took throughout the work year that could benefit from improvement.

For starters, if you’ve gotten into a habit of coming into work late a few days a week, think about the steps you can take to change this.

Trust me, people take notice when you walk in five minutes late almost everyday with a Starbucks latte in your hand.

If this sounds like you, try skipping the ‘Bucks stop each morning and attempt to drink the coffee in the break room (I promise, it isn’t so bad after a while.) Or, simply set your alarm for the morning back by five minutes.

Practice safe procrastination

Speaking of wasted time, procrastination happens to the best of us. And, anybody that knows me knows what I’m about to say next: make a list! Seriously, start each week by writing the tasks you want to accomplish in order of how you want to accomplish them.

Having goals right in front of your face increases motivation and decreases procrastination.

However, be careful with how much you’re putting on your plate at one time. There never seems to be enough time in the day to get everything done, but giving individualized attention to each project rather than multitasking will save you time in the long run. You’re less likely to make mistakes and have to go back and fix your work.

Hey, you, smile!

And, while it can be difficult sometimes, it’s always best to go into a commitment to improve with a positive attitude. In order to do this, try cutting out simple things like gossiping about coworkers or placing blame on another department.

By consciously knowing that you want to make an effort to improve your work persona and performance, you’ve already won half the battle.


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  1. Pingback: Serial procrastinator? Your issue isn't time management - The American Genius

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