Why do you enjoy your work?

Home office adventure

Last update: August 14, 2019

I lovingly dusted and enriched this article in July 2019.

I have adapted the content to the "now time" and expanded it to include my current experiences, and you can now also listen to it in the podcast ...

Have fun reading or listening!

At the beginning of the Home Office Adventure in 2015, I was a guest on a podcast for the first time. You can listen to the interview with Katharina Boersch here, then you also have the connection to this article :-).

In any case, in this interview Katharina caught me off guard with a question. Namely, with the question of whether there are things that I don't like doing so much and how I motivate myself to do them after all or to stick with them.

Yes, of course I had received the questions in advance and was able to prepare a little for them. The preparation went relatively smoothly until I came to this question, to which I did not immediately have a meaningful answer. Because: I couldn't think of what I don't like about my freelance work.

In the first moment.

On closer inspection, however, I noticed that I had developed a few strategies that would help me not love everything but love everything to like let what I do all day

I would like to give you a few of them here so that you can answer the question: "What don't you like to do"In the future you will ponder ;-)

Change Settings

The magic word attitude.

The magic word because by changing your attitude to this activity, it will be done, as if by magic, easier, more efficiently and also faster.

The magic word perhaps because it sounds so simple.

Change your mindset. - But how exactly does it work?

(1) Keep an eye on the result

If doing it is not fun in itself, what about the result?

Do you enjoy seeing or experiencing the result?

As a small example: A reader had decided to finally send out her reminders.

That doesn't sound like fun and joy, and I can absolutely understand that. Because it also means putting a little pressure on the customer. It may also mean that you don't feel valued if your customers don't pay.

The result of this unloved activity, however, is that your account balance will develop positively. And that's fun, isn't it?

(2) Ask yourself: Why?

This second strategy, namely the question of “why”, goes a little deeper or is even more long-term than arriving at a new assessment based on the result.

If you continue the example with the reminders, then the why may be that you want to be able to live from your independent work. Or that you are saving for something special?

In a guest article by Julia Gruber, I already described in a different context how you responded to the Why behind it can come.

But here, too, it can help you not to ask just once why you should actually do something that you don't really enjoy!

(3) Take a look ‘behind the scenes

So while I was pondering when it actually happened that I wasn't enjoying something, I noticed that mostly the following things were behind it:

  • I feel overwhelmed
  • have a vague fear of
  • have never done it before
  • or don't know how to go about it.

Against all these reasons or "excuses" there are again strategies:

Overwhelming

For example, being overwhelmed can mean that you only see what you have to do as a whole. Divide it into as small pieces as possible and then take a look at the first step that you have defined. Just the first step.

Is the feeling that you are overwhelmed with it still there?

Often, vague fears are just images in your head.

If you identify such a fear as an image, you could picture it in your mind's eye as a counter-strategy - and then grab a fat eraser and erase it in your mind.

That might sound a bit weird now, but feel free to try it out! If you like, you can instead paint a new picture afterwards - e.g. of the great result.

The first time can be scary.

But here, too, you can achieve a different view of things by changing your perspective.

  • Isn't it really exciting to try something new?
  • How could you feel after
  • Is it really "fear" or rather "excitement"?

Develop yourself into an adrenaline junkie in these things! And you will see that it is becoming more and more attractive for you to try new things.

You are not omniscient

Say goodbye to the fact that you always have to know exactly how to approach a task.

But others may know!

Especially in these times of the internet, with forums and groups that are available in a wide variety of social networks, it should be easy for you to find someone who is already one or two steps further than you.

So get support, other opinions and ideas from people who like to pass on their knowledge.

(4) Just get rid of it!

If nothing works at all, i.e. it is an almost insurmountable barrier for you every time, then consider very pragmatically whether you can not just get rid of this unpopular activity.

Classic examples of this are handing over the bookkeeping to a tax advisor or providing household support through a pearl.

But even the first employee can support you in such a way that you have more energy for the tasks in which you are really excellent! I brought my son on board in July 2019 - you can read how I went about it in the Assistant Adventure ...

(5) Starting is the hardest - make it easier for yourself!

In the interview I admitted that doing household chores doesn't necessarily make me euphoric ;-). Maybe you can understand that too ...

On the other hand, if you had to spend an hour cleaning and tidying up every day, that would mean that you would have to "pull yourself up" 7 times a week. Seven hurdles that you have to overcome, because starting is always the hardest part of an unloved task!

Therefore:

(6) reward? Yes, but exclusively please!

This is an often read tip: Reward yourself!

My strategy goes a little further.

More or less by chance I discovered that listening to podcasts is a lot of fun. My exclusive reward is therefore that I am only allowed to listen to podcasts if I combine this enjoyment with things that do not necessarily make me cheer. This makes them a kind of sideline.

In other words, I only listen to podcasts when, for example, doing household chores or doing sports (yes, I don't really enjoy that either ;-)). The only exception is my weekly trip to the office. It has less to do with reward than opportunity.

There is absolutely no point in rewarding yourself with things that you can have anytime and anywhere anyway. Or with things that, strictly speaking, already belong to your everyday life. For example, I am personally not motivated to treat myself to a nice cup of coffee, because I drink it every day.

So if you want to motivate yourself through rewards, then really go for an exclusive reward. Then it works with it too.

(7) It doesn't always have to be fun

This is a sentence that comes to my mind when all other strategies have not helped. Also strengthened by something that I noticed in interviews with what I perceived to be successful people.

What do they answer to the question: "How do you get it all sorted?

"I look‘ on my to-do list and then just work through what is on it, point by point. "

Sounds easy right?

The thought creeps up on me that these successful people often don't think about whether they are "in the mood" right now.

You see what needs to be done - and you do it.

I also have the theory “It doesn't always have to be fun” in the article Some shit I have to! illuminated more deeply.

So now I would be really interested in what you would have answered Katharina to this question. Please leave me your answers in the comment!

P.S. And don't forget: stay ‘curious!