Work and Fun Are Not Mutually Exclusive
While IT professionals can get plenty of satisfaction from their jobs, most of them would welcome the opportunity to make their tech career more fun than it already is. Work and fun do not have to be mutually exclusive, nor do enjoyment and productivity.
In fact, having fun at work boosts morale, reduces burnout, spurs creativity, promotes collaboration and teamwork, and creates an environment where people are happy to spend most of their waking hours.
Whether you are working from home or in an office surrounded by colleagues and a hum of activity, here are some simple ways you can make your tech career more fun:
Make Your Workspace Your Happy Place
Beyond a keyboard, monitor, mouse, phone, and other equipment and supplies, your desk and workspace are blank canvases just waiting for some flair and personality.
Adding personal touches to your workspace can bring you comfort and joy and remind you of the other things in your life that make you happy. Pictures of friends, loved ones, or good times, meaningful or humorous knickknacks on your desk, artwork with vibrant or warm colors, or anything that expresses your personality (and is office-appropriate, of course) can all create an environment where you feel right at home. And when you are comfortable in your space, having fun gets easier.
Listen To The Music
Unless your company or responsibilities preclude you from tuning out while you work, putting in your earbuds and jamming to your favorite tunes can yield positive results. Music can make you smile and motivate and help you focus, make time go by faster, and distract you if you are working on a particularly dull task or project.
Tip: If you are struggling to find a radio station that plays the right mix to boost your mood and motivation, try making a personal playlist on services like Spotify or Pandora. Depending on the task at hand, having more than one playlist can also be very helpful.
Be a Friend
Are you going to become best buddies with any or all of the people in your office? Probably not. But that doesn’t mean you can’t cultivate positive and pleasant relationships with your colleagues beyond just taking care of business.
Humans are social creatures, and we derive great happiness from our friendships. Get to know your workmates beyond their job titles and duties. Have lunch with them or gather for happy hour after work to laugh, play, and talk about life outside the office.
Even discussing work can be enjoyable and cathartic when you can share your feelings or concerns with others who can relate to the topic.
Related: How To Promote Having A Friend At Work
Who doesn’t love a little healthy competition? The “gamification” of work became so popular over the past few decades for just that reason. Create challenges between you and your colleagues about who can accomplish tasks or reach goals the fastest, with the loser having to buy lunch or a cup of coffee for the winner.
But also play games that are unrelated to work and just for fun. Share Wordle results with colleagues first thing in the morning, play ping pong or foosball in the breakroom, or find another game appropriate to your office. Shifting into competition mode for a bit can supercharge you for the rest of your work day and is a great way to make your tech career more fun.
Whoever said that “laughter is the best medicine” knew what they were talking about. Laughing relieves stress and improves attitudes and outlook. Even a corny joke or pun that makes the whole room groan can lighten the mood and bring out the giggles.
Sharing jokes or funny videos will make you and your colleagues happier, bring your team closer, and make your tech career more fun. Harmless pranks or establishing funny traditions are great ways to share a chuckle. For example, the last person arriving for a meeting may have to listen to music they hate all day or wear something ridiculous.
Give Yourself a Break
Especially when your tech work is intense or deeply involved, breaks are indispensable. Yes, you want to get as much done as possible, but giving yourself a break is far from a waste of time as it can reduce stress and restore energy and focus.
Your break may involve working out, grabbing a cup of coffee from the breakroom, going for a walk, running errands, or simply sitting at your desk doing anything other than staring at your monitor. Whatever you choose, take time throughout the day to shift your focus to something that makes you smile. IT professionals with a good work-life balance tend to find their tech career more fun.
To Make Your Tech Career More Fun, Start By Getting The IT Job You Want
Making your tech career more fun can be hard when you feel trapped in a position with little growth potential or that does not suit your personal or professional goals.
GTN Technical Staffing helps top tech professionals find their happy place by connecting them with the top tech companies offering rewarding career opportunities.