Remember the Last Time You Fell in Love?

Remember how exciting it was when you first fell in love?

Your heart somersaulted every time you met the one you loved. The two of you sat up talking all night and never ran out of something to say. You always seemed to have so much energy. The thrill of falling in love is wonderful.

Soon enough, reality set in, and you had to start working to make the relationship succeed. That’s good, of course. It’s how you truly grow to know and love the other person.

In many ways, a new job is like a love affair.

Fall in love with your career

The first stage is excitement, which can last from an hour to many years. You think, “This job will pay me more money than I’ve ever earned. The clients will be wonderful to deal with. I will expand my knowledge and enjoy exciting experiences.” The novelty of the job keeps your energy high. You are happy because you feel productive and are satisfied with contributing to your team.

Then, the second stage, reality, sets in.

You still enjoy your work; however, you begin to notice some of the irritants and difficulties. Deadlines seem endless and impossible. It becomes harder to arrive early or stay late. You used to love the comradery; now it seems an effort to go in three days a week. The novelty starts to wear off. And, like love, your job has a third stage, too…disillusion.

The pendulum swings past reality, and you find your focus on the negative aspects. That’s when the “maybe” begins.

“Maybe I could make better money at Company X and not have to work as hard.”

“Maybe I’d be happier with more responsibility at Corporation Y.”

“Maybe Company Z would let me work from home more.”

In jobs, as in love, it’s very important for the pendulum to swing back.

You need to work to regain the exhilaration of the first stage, which is essential to a fulfilling life. Think about what you did to keep the thrill in your love life. Maybe the two of you relived your first date at that little country restaurant, or you thought to thank your loved one for being kind and generous. In short, you remember to see the person you first fell in love with.

Apply this same technique to your career.

Rekindle the thrill you felt when you first began your job. You must have had good reasons for taking it. What were they? Make a list of them, and expect to experience those joys again in your daily routine.

Begin each day with a smile. Anticipate having a productive, stimulating day. Even if your interactions are in Zoom. If you really expect to be productive, I guarantee that almost nothing can stop you. Here are some practical staying-in-love techniques:

Your mother was right. Have a good breakfast to give you the energy we all need.

Dress with pride and attention to detail as you did on your first work day. Even if you are now working from home. I am shocked at how many of my clients say, “I look terrible, so I will not turn on my webcam.”

Certainly, I wear comfortable slacks. However, I use makeup and dress well with jewelry. It makes me feel better when I see myself, and looking as good as I can for my executive clients is respectful.

Get to work as early as possible and spend some quiet time settling in before everyone else arrives or your first Zoom meeting. My treat is my early morning coffee, all alone, while reading my email and checking LinkedIn.

Do what I call the “icky” things first. Even the most fantastic job includes tasks that aren’t much fun. If you get them out of the way, the rest of the day will fly by.

At the end of every day, take a moment to reflect on what you have accomplished and learned and what was the most fun.  

These are your non-taxable fringe benefits. If you only work for the paycheck, you will be employed, but not “employable” long term.

I challenge you to find ways to keep your relationships and your jobs exciting and challenging. Ultimately, our happiness largely depends on how we feel about what is a significant part of our lives. Work.

Good luck finding love in your job, again.

If you want to fall in love with speaking … then we must talk!

“For twenty years, I have been attending National Speakers Association conferences with my wife, Janelle Barlow, Ph.D. I learned more about speaking from working on my most important speech with Patricia Fripp than in the prior twenty years. Her suggestions and guidance were invaluable.” Jeffrey Mishlove, Ph.D.

Need help for you or your team on improving important conversations and presentations? The Fripp Customized Approach will work for you. Contact Fripp today!