Career

Here’s Exactly How To Start Your Work Year Like A Boss

By Urban List Writers
2nd Jan 2021

a woman in red in front of a wall with a mural on it

One thing we can probably all agree on? 2020 was a bit of a jerk. Most of us learnt to live that work-from-home life, playing musical chairs with our housemates as we vied for the best desk set up in the kitchen before eventually talking to our house plants for some company—it's safe to say we’re glad to see the back of it.

For some of us, the pandemic meant we lost our jobs, changed careers or even turned our side hustles into full-time gigs (to the people that created matching lounge sets, we salute you). One thing is for sure, we’re keen to start this year on a high when it comes to the work front.

No sure how? Now most of us are back in the office, we’ve sussed out 10 pro tips to help you start your work year like a boss.

Create The Perfect Workspace

While you probably can’t redesign your entire office (and lowkey you're just excited to actually be back in one IRL), you can control what your desk area looks like. Add a little nature to your space with a plant or two, and why not get inspired with a few quotes, too? Add a pic of your fave people, create a vision board and you’ll feel ready to take on the world. 

Take Breaks Throughout The Day

All work and no play is a recipe for burnout, and this is especially true for people who think that being glued to a chair in front of a computer means you’re working hard. Studies show that taking five minutes of ‘me’ time throughout the day will help clear your head which will make you more productive. Ever been sitting at your desk and stuck on something? Go for a quick walk and get some fresh air outside. We promise you’ll be better for it. Need some inspo, here are some simple ways to get moving. 

Learn To Work Smarter, Not Longer

It’s time to embrace a new philosophy to work smarter, not harder. Instead of wasting away your day frantically answering emails and sipping coffee after coffee after coffee, without being productive, use your time wisely. Plan your day before you start work and be realistic about how much you can get done in your set hours. Get ahead of the pack with these awesome app planners.

Write A To-Do List The Night Before

This leads to our next point: write a to-do list the night before. Ever spent the evening in bed trying to sleep while going over everything you have to do when you get back to work? Instead, try writing your to-do list the night before so you can put it aside until you’re ready to tackle the tasks in the morning. It’ll also allow you to hit the ground running as soon as you arrive at the office.

Start The Day With Your Most Dreaded Task

Have you heard the saying ‘eat the frog first’? While you don’t have to literally eat a frog, make it a priority to do the task you’ve been putting off the most. Once it’s done you can move onto the fun stuff.

Log Off At Home

Ok, so we know it’s not possible to log off in the evenings every day of the week, but how about just once? Leave your laptop at work (or, if you work from home, lock it in a cupboard out of sight) and try to stay away from checking your phone as well. You’ll have a much better sleep and will be so much more productive the next day.

Start Your Day With Gratitude

It may sound a bit corny, but studies show that starting your day with gratitude will set you up right for the rest of your day. Wake up and be thankful for at least one thing that will relate to the day ahead. Try it and see how your mindset changes. If you're really keen, check out these apps that will help with mindfulness and meditation. 

Embrace Constructive Criticism

Constructive criticism is all about how you take it—some people thrive while others…well let’s just say they feel like crawling into a hole and crying. No judgement either way, but you can start your work year with a different mindset, because no doubt you’re going to have a few run-ins with some constructive criticism. Look at it as a learning experience, because we’re all about learning right? You paid a trillion dollars at uni to learn, and now you’re lucky enough to get paid to learn.

Sort Your Summer Work Wardrobe

There’s nothing we dread more in the new year, when it’s the peak of summer, than trying to figure out what the feck to wear in the sweltering heat. Getting flustered over trying to find an outfit can be a huge time waster, and won’t help you roll into work like a boss. So, plan your outfits in advance to avoid post-traumatic stress of not having anything to wear. Check out our easy guide

Sit Down With The Team And Brainstorm

There’s nothing like getting the creative juices flowing by having a brainstorm meeting post-summer holidays with all the ideas you’ve stewed up. Creative ideas can come when you’re doing the most random things…or nothing at all. You’d probably been pushing your luck and draining all your creative energy at the end of 2020, so now is the time to sit down with your team and have a brainstorm session on how to make 2021 the best year yet.

Now you've got yourself sorted, here's three ways to score that promotion by your next performance review.

Image Credit: Christian Vierig/Getty

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