Valentine's Day is a day for love. Chocolates, roses, romantic gestures. That's fine for home life, but sometimes the romance at work fades. Fear not! There are ways to reignite the flame and remember what drew you to your job in the first place.
Here are 75 ways you can learn to fall in love again with your job:
1. Organize someone to bring in snacks every Monday
2. Organize a social outing once a month
This could be a happy hour or a lunch, but it should be outside the office. It could be with or without significant others.
3. Increase the light at your desk
There's tons of research on the importance of light. It contributes to both efficiency and happiness.
4. Rearrange your desk/office
Mix it up and give yourself something new to look at.
5. Have a good breakfast
It really is the most important meal of the day. It sets you up to be productive, and prevents you from snacking on bad things during the day.
6. Exercise in the middle of the day
Take a break in the middle of the day. Go to the gym, take a walk around the block, get the blood flowing.
7. Take a walk around the block
Go by yourself, or take a group with you. It will help wake you up and keep you motivated for the day.
8. Have a conversation with a colleague you don't know well
Get to know someone new. You never know what you might find!
9. Take a colleague out to lunch
This is especially true if a colleague is having a rough time. It's a small gesture, but meaningful.
10. Start a book club
This is a fun, relaxing way to find common ground with your colleagues and take in some good literature.
11. Make a To Do List every day
Beginning each day with this activity helps make an efficient schedule - plus it's super satisfying to check things off!
12. Buy some new clothes
Some new duds can give you a boost of confidence when you need one.
13. Hold a caption contest
Every week, put a picture or meme on the office refrigerator and challenge your colleagues to come up with the wittiest caption.
14. Go to a professional development seminar
Keep yourself on top of your game. Always push yourself to get to that next level.
15. Read a book on your industry
Even if your boss won't pay for you to go to a conference, you can still develop your professional skills.
16. Set new goals
Doing the same thing day after day, year after year, can become mundane. Mix it up by setting higher goals for yourself, or reaching into unexplored areas.
17. Make a list of what you like
When you're feeling down about your job, make a list of what you like about it. It might surprise you how much you actually enjoy!
18. Take a vacation
Sometimes the key really is that simple!
19. Have an afternoon viewing of movies that relate to your field
Look at it as a relaxing form of professional development.
20. Have theme days
Joe Madden famously uses themed road trips to keep a loose atmosphere. And his Cubs won the World Series in 2016 after a 100+ year drought, so he must be on to something!
21. Get tee shirts made
Everyone loves a free tee shirt. Get matching shirts for your team, including a team-produced logo and motto!
22. Institute casual Fridays
23. Go on a retreat
It can be for team building or professional development, but retreats are a great way to bond with your colleagues and improve your career.
24. Invite guest speakers
Businesses can learn a great deal from experts in their field.
25. Have a talent show
Lots of people have hidden talents. And even those without much artistic talent can make a great show!
26. Join an office softball or kickball team
Athletic ability doesn't matter - just your ability to have fun, and drink a beer afterwards!
27. Bowling at lunch
Always a crowd pleaser, bowling is also great for office bragging rights.
28. Bring your pet to work day
Be aware of those with allergies, of course, but a puppy has never seen a bad attitude he couldn't cure.
29. Have a coloring station
Adult coloring books are all the rage for relaxation. And sometimes it's ok to use a kid's book too!
30. Group yoga
Yoga is great for releasing stress in the moment. It's also great for mindfulness in general, which every office can use.
31. Host a silly poetry competition
If the tension in your office is about to explode,
Tell them that joke about the chicken who crossed the road.
If it doesn't bring a smile to their faces,
Tell them what happened when you had untied laces.
32. Host a potluck lunch
Here's an opportunity to show of your cooking skills. It's also a fun way to get to know your colleagues' heritages.
33. Bubble wrap
Buy a roll of bubble wrap and invite each person to jump on a section. There is nothing more satisfying.
34. Make a new friend
Is there someone at your office you don't know well? Better yet, is there someone you don't quite get along with? Make a point to pay them a compliment or thank them for their work. A little gesture can go a long way.
35. Office chair races
If you don't think they're fun, you probably need to think about the attitude you're bringing into work each day.
36. Reserve a space for power napping
Everyone needs a quick catnap sometimes. Reserve a small, quiet, dark space for just that purpose.
37. Bring in a bouquet of flowers for the reception area.
What a nice way to be greeted into the office every morning!
38. Easter egg hunt
Hide plastic eggs around the office and see who can find the most. Fill the eggs with little candies and stickers.
39. Christmas gift donations
There are tons of opportunities for giving back at the holidays. Donating towards the same cause can help bring an office together.
40. Secret Santa, with a twist
Lots of offices do Christmas gift swaps, so give yours a little something special. Require the gift to fall into a theme, or make it a rule you cannot spend any money.
41. July 4 BBQ
Burgers. Beer. America.
42. Homemade Valentine's Day cards
Everyone likes getting a Valentine's Day card. But making it by hand, and including a nice complement for each person, makes it something special.
43. Dress up on Halloween
If you don't have an important client meeting, go for it! Even a little face paint can create a fun atmosphere.
44. Bring in leftover Halloween candy, but at another time
Does your office need a pick-me-up during the winter doldrums? Bring in a little bowl of Halloween candy. You know you still have it.
45. When the clock Springs Forward, let your team come in an hour late
It's a nice, simple gesture that no one thinks of.
46. Do something fun for April Fool's Day
Don't make anyone the butt of the joke. But do something fun, like filling a box of donuts with vegetables.
47. Celebrate birthdays and milestones
Fill their cubicle with balloons, put up a sign. Everyone deserves to have their special day marked.
48. Don't wait to be asked
If you know your boss needs something done, do it before it's needed. Your boss will be impressed with your initiative, and you'll be ahead of the game.
49. Have an office pool for obscure sports
The Olympics is full of them - curling and badminton, for example - and it's a fun contest where likely no one has the advantage of knowledge.
50. Attack the root of the problem
If there's a problem in the office, don't just put a Band-Aid on it. Get to the real issue, and solve the problem once and for all.
51. Be a pressure releaser, not a pressure builder
Office life is hard enough without agitators. Be a peacemaker, not an instigator.
52. Plan ahead and work ahead
It sounds simple, but it can be quite challenging. But if you can do it, it will make a world of difference to you and your colleagues.
53. Contribute towards the big picture
It's important never to forget the main goal. Remind yourself how a mundane task contributes to the goal, or change a task to make it move the ball forward more efficiently.
54. Expecting a tough meeting? Get a helmet.
When your team is ready to attack a problem, signify it by wearing your protective gear into the meeting. Get the troops fired up!
55. Give a complement to a colleague
You never know when someone's having a bad day. A kind word can make a big difference in someone's day.
56. Hide little chocolate hearts around the office
Attach a little note indicating it's theirs to enjoy. It will brighten someone's day!
57. Communicate with more patience
Even if you've already given the same instructions 5 times, tell them a 6th time when they ask. Someday you'll need this same patience from someone else.
58. Get everyone in the office a wind up toy or a Pez dispenser
It's a cute toy to decorate your desk, and make you smile.
59. Be humble
No one likes a braggart, especially colleagues. Remember, this is a team sport.
60. Be a motivator
Encourage your teammates, and never put them down. If they mess up, look at it as a teaching moment.
61. Make someone else look great
Did someone impress you in their effort or their results? Give them a public shout out. It will mean a lot to them, and it will make you look like a strong team player.
62. Do one nice thing every day
Put it on the checklist you make every morning. It could be bringing someone a cup of coffee, or it could be volunteering to complete an annoying task. We all need to build up the karma.
63. Clean up someone else's mess
Whether it's a nightmare in the microwave or a bad client interaction, volunteer to fix it even though you didn't break it. Helping colleagues pays dividends later.
64. Resolve conflict - when it's unhealthy
Remember, some conflict is good. From disagreement and debate often come great ideas!
65. Teach as your do
There are parts of every job that are more art than science. These tasks are always harder to learn. The next time you have to do this, invite a younger colleague to get involved.
66. Office Jeopardy!
Topics can include colleague peccadillos, industry norms, or customer names.
67. Approach challenges as an opportunity
Not every uphill battle or problem has to be treated as an arduous task. Consider the opportunity you have to rethink processes.
68. Leave a trail of manageable process
Eventually, you'll probably leave your position. So from the beginning, keep a "how to" guide for your job. It will help when you transition up - and it'll help when you go on vacation!
69. Give out weekly or monthly prizes
Who wore the best socks? Made the funniest joke? Mark the little moments.
70. Suggest an update to core values
Every company has core values, but not every company follows them. Are your core values still in line with your company? Do they need refining?
71. Encourage your colleagues
Everyone needs a cheerleader sometimes. Be that for your colleagues and they'll be your cheerleader when you need it.
72. Play a board or card game
73. Make Rice Krispie Treats in the office microwave
They're easy to make and delicious. Just remember to clean up after!
74. Publish The Potty Post
That's right, a weekly newsletter for the bathroom stall. Include that week's birthdays, a comic, and funny commentary on current events.
75. Find a new job!
When it doesn't fit, it doesn't fit. Don't be afraid to make a change when it's necessary.