Emotional baggage can affect how you perform and, in the long run, damage your career. While we may not want to acknowledge it, we all have at least one negative habit that we’d like to break in our personal and/or professional life. Whether it’s spending too much time on social media sites, arriving late to work regularly, or delaying crucial project deadlines, there’s no shortage of bad habits we’d like to get rid of. Don’t be concerned! You are not destined for a life of poor habits. There are a few things you can do, such as describing the behaviour you want to modify and making a list of the things you want to modify. Let’s start with how unhealthy habits might affect your performance at work.
You may believe that when you walk into the office on Monday morning, you are leaving your personal life behind. But it’s not that easy on the emotional level. What you do and where you work becomes ingrained in your personality. Your sense of self—your identity—is inextricably linked to your work. It’s a good idea to become more self-aware so you can make sure you’re doing things that are good for you and the firm. At work, there are a variety of poor habits that can cause delays in promotions, loss of clients or profitability, or even firing. You want to be known for your hard work rather than being labelled as someone who “phones it in” or can’t be trusted.
People postpone things as they are terrified of taking responsibility for a decision of committing to a plan of action, and, eventually, of failing. Procrastinators wait until they’re up against a wall before relying on adrenaline to overcome their concerns and complete their tasks. However, work often degrades as a result of ongoing stress.
What you should do: Make a list of the top two things you’re avoiding right now that are critical to your career and tackle them first. But no more than two or you’ll be setting yourself up to miss the rest of the list.
You may be battling with defensiveness
if you feel that your co-workers are always putting you down and that the subtext of many of your talks with them is that they’re right and you’re wrong. When people disagree with you, even if they don’t mean to upset you, you may feel assaulted.
What you should do: Recognize that others may perceive you as the attacker. If you have a few folks in your office with whom you frequently dispute, try clearing the air by asking, “When we dispute, are you saying I’m wrong or simply attempting to explain why you’re not wrong?” You could discover that at least some of them aren’t attempting to provoke or disregard your viewpoints.
Frittering time away
If you feel like you’ve accomplished nothing and your to-do list has grown even longer at the end of the day, you might want to reconsider how you spend your time. We get caught up in busy work much too often just because it is easier. The stress of being overworked may force you to prioritise what’s at the top of your to-do list rather than what’s at the bottom.
What you should do: Unless an email or phone call is urgent, respond to emails and phone calls in batches. Before reacting, take a moment to pause and consider your options. Even if you don’t think you have time to digest information, doing so will prevent you from making costly mistakes. Keep a list of your top two or three priorities in your line of sight and check it periodically to make sure your activities are aligned with them.
Breaking harmful habits can feel like an impossible task. However, beneficial changes are conceivable. Both at work and home, you have what it takes to break negative behaviours. And you’ll be successful. It will require time, effort, and perseverance. Remember to be gentle with yourself as you begin to break your unhealthy behaviours. It can take a long time for real change to occur. Begin by modifying only one behaviour at a time and you’ll quickly find yourself with better behaviours and more rewarding rewards.