Work Ethic. We all have it, right? Or so we think. I can bet that there is at least that one person at your job that you personally believe could have a better work ethic, or that person that you feel as if they are never pulling their end of the slack…funny thing is, whether good work ethic or poor work ethic, most employees will say that they have a great work ethic when asked by upper management , when in reality, do they really? Last night, I found myself laying in bed questioning my work ethic…For years, I have always prided myself in having the best work ethic…and for years, I have carried on saying that my work ethic is impeccable. It was until a last night, that I was snapped into reality. Okay, yes, I am a very hard worker when it comes to my actual job, but there is so much more to life than just your work, at work. When I was questioned about my work ethic, and said maybe I claim to have better work ethic than the amount of work I am putting into things I of course first got very emotional and shut down. As I laid there hearing excess fireworks going on from 4th of July celebrations occurring 24 hours too late, I really began to think long and hard… Do I have a poor work ethic? The answer was…Yes.
When I first accepted the fact that my work ethic was just not up to par of where I would like it to be I literally just sat there with tears rolling down my cheeks. I was thinking the absolute worst of the situation. Anything Len said went in one ear and out the other, I wasn’t having it. The words of, “I don’t like the person I am” even came out of my mouth followed by, “I am not happy.” It is kind of weird sitting here writing less than 24 hours later and looking back at that girl saying those horrible things. Who was that?! Because by any means, I love the person I am and I am very happy. Throughout the couple of hours that I was up way past my bedtime considering I needed to be at work by 4:00AM today, I learned more about myself than I did in the past year or so and I hope I can help you as well learn about yourself and your work ethic.
Get up, go to work, workout, cook dinner, clean, laundry, working on a blog, walk the dog, make appointments, run social media pages, have a social life…. etc etc. The list goes on and on. Whatever you choose to do outside of work often times seems like a job in itself. For instance, once football season starts, my at home life becomes more stressful than my work life with all the duties that I pick up. Throughout college, I was on top of my game. I worked five jobs, went to school full-time, managed a small social circle, and even made time to sleep on occasion. Crazy thing was, as the age of 21 while I managed all these jobs and school, I was the most organized, with the best time management skills, and with the most money in the bank. Why? My work ethic was impeccable. Now, I am about to turn 25 in less than two weeks and up until last night, I have kept saying my work ethic was impeccable… If my work ethic was so great, would I really be going to bed every night with a list of tasks that needed to be done as soon as possible…most likely, no.
While working a full time job can be stressful at times, especially after promotions, if there is one thing that I have learned it is that when I get home after a long, busy, stressful day my favorite thing to do is throw on some sweats and cuddle up next to my best friend. No matter what happened in the eight plus hours at work, I know that I always have someone to come home to, to help relieve my stress and put a smile on my face. Although lately, I have COMPLETELY slacked on just about everything in life in my home life, besides working out (where I could still do even better). I have come up with every excuse in the book it seemed like… Whether I worked out twice in one day and was too tired to take the dog out, or because I would rather go out to dinner than cook because I had a long day at work, I have become the QUEEN B of making excuses, procrastinating, and putting things off till the last minute…But that all stops here.
Again, as I sat here now looking back at last night, I began to analyze how I used to be able to get through managing five jobs and school, with that small social circle and I remembered what it was…my planner. Now the thing is, I use planners to this day…multiple, my house is even filled with calendars in multiple different rooms…problem is, I do not stick to them. Not sticking to my routines has allowed for my work ethic to PLUMMT tremendously. From posting on my blog, to making doctors appointments, to even switching the load of laundry, my life has been a complete hectic mess and I have no one to blame but myself. When I allowed myself to get out of a routine of checking my planner every hour making sure I was not missing anything, I allowed my home life to struggle. Thank goodness to Len for picking up my slack but I slowly began to realize the things that I usually would do around the house, he was doing. Some would think that was great, but it actually hurt my feelings in a way…I became so lazy that he had to pick up my slack, and that tore me apart.
Great thing is, this is an easy correction when it comes to work ethic. For everyone reading along, my advice for you to increase your work ethic as well as live a better, more care free and easy life is to invest into a Panda Planner. Len recently bought us both one and of course I was excited, I love new planners…but this planner was nothing that you could even imagine. Not only can I plan my months in advance, but I can plan by week, as well as by day.. Stay tuned for a whole post about this amazing invention called the Panda Planner because it deserves its own post… so back to work ethic and how to change it.
First and foremost, the first step of improving a poor work ethic is to acknowledge the fact that you have one. For anyone who believes they have the perfect work ethic, analyze your life again…No one is perfect and no ones work ethic is perfect. We are created to keep working day in and day out to improve things about us including your personal work ethic whether it be for at home, at school, or from work. For me, what made me realize that I was slacking was when my best friend pointed out that I had not posted on my blog in over a month…Something that I was so passionate about, so excited about, and somewhere where I had a true opportunity to share my stories with the world…I was mad at first coming up with every reason why I hadn’t posted… “I’m tired from work”, “My promotion was stressful”, “I worked out twice today and don’t want to”, “I didn’t have time”. Do you see the resemblance? Every single one is an excuse for not getting the task at hand done. So, once you have realized that your work ethic could use some improvements, the next step is quite easy; get it done. If you say you are going to do something, do it. Not in five minutes, tomorrow, or next year…do it right now! If you need to set yourself a schedule or make a reminder for yourself, do it! If you have to make a planner on paper as well as in your phone, do it! Improving your work ethic is probably one of the easiest transformations we can possibly make in this world, so that is my goal for you! Whatever you want to do today, do it! Don’t half ass it, don’t make excuses for why it is not getting done, just do it!
Over the next month, focus on improving your work ethic.Whether it is while you are at work, staying off social media while on the clock, or just taking the dog on a walk at night knowing that he’s been caged up all day. One task a day can help improve not only your work ethic, but your overall self as well. The more that you get done, the better you will begin to feel about yourself. The next time that an employer in an interview asks how your work ethic is you will be able to respond, “Great, I get my tasks done and manage my time well.” Believe me, hard work does pay off!
Stay tuned for updates on lenandjen.com as I begin to focus on improving my work ethic instead of making excuses!