How to Develop a Strong Work Ethic with My 7 Simple Steps

It’s easy to get sidetracked and lose your focus. Developing a better work ethic can help you stay on course. Not only can you get things done, but you can take care of everything else you are responsible for in your own world bubble.

It’s not a great feeling to not live up to your greatest potential. It’s even worse when you are the one holding yourself back. So let’s look at how you can get started developing a strong work ethic.

7 Ways to Improve Work Ethic

The 7 steps below come from my experience. They are the steps I take, and have to remind myself to continue taking for improving my work ethic. I’m not the most hard working kind of guy, but I can at least be smart about myself and make the most out of it.

1. Listen to that inner voice holding you back, and converse with it

Some people have legitimate excuses. Others might not. Whichever side you are on, if you want to move your life forward, then we need to identify the risk adverse voice inside our head. That voice might tell you it’s okay to screw around for another hour. It might also say you’re the victim and it’s the entire world’s fault. Knowing how it sounds, and having a talk with it might help shed light in the darkest parts of your mind; the parts that stay out of sight and whisper for you to avoid thinking about the work and avoid thinking about how you are avoiding things.

Writing in a journal is the easiest way to visually see the discussion going on with your inner voice. Starting a blog I hope can help, too. 🙂

2. Embrace your motto for getting things done

Some people use a “If not now, then never” attitude. Others adopt a “I love this” attitude. Some people find themselves thinking “I never want to go back again”. Whichever motto you find, embracing the right one will help you power through the tough times.

For myself, I prefix all my mini-goals with “I need to …”. I need to publish my two work-in-progress articles today. I need to revise and publish my freelancer’s written work. I need to find a new crypto token trading pair and place at least three buy limit order layers.

3. Develop a sense of taking care of you and your time as if you were someone important

To use your time effectively is to accept you only have so much time. To accept you only have so much time is to understand that your time is crucial to you. It’s easy to believe your time is only worth minimum wage when you have 8 hours each day evident to that. However, if you can find it in you to recognize your time is worth way more than the deceptive “market price” you have been given, then you might be able to treat your time as if it was worth 10x that. Know that time can only be given up, and never taken back.

Morning self-affirmations can help a lot here. I always remind myself how important my time is and how even more important it is to take care of myself like I am someone worth my time.

4. Come up with a plan, no matter how terrible it seems, and correct it as you go

A bad plan is better than no plan. The idea behind having a plan at all, no matter how shitty it seems to you, gives you a sense of guidance. It is the beacon that lights the way. It illuminates all the dark spots in your world. But only if you can sit down and make an honest plan out of your goals. Always remember you can change your plans. No one can stop you from making it work.

If it helps, I like to spend a few minutes writing down in bullet points all the “major events” that happened during my day. For example, waking up at 7 A.M. and starting the day right away, feeling worried about where two of my actively traded crypto pairs are moving, and failing to read for 30 minutes during the evening. I then follow up by highlighting the good with green and terrible with red. This general and methodical review of my day with the color indicating the good and terrible moments provide feedback to what parts of my plans are going well and what needs to be corrected.

5. Start your day strong by creating a morning routine

During this morning routine, you aim to take care of all your essentials for the day. Health is always a priority, so eating right and exercising should be part of your morning routine. I double check the rough plans I make the night before, and add anything new that came to mind or that I may have missed. My plans are tracked on a Trello board set up in a Kanban style (In -> Next action -> In progress -> Pending -> Done).

I’m also trying to include reading and meditating into my plans. These two practices have always helped me see things in new light. Writing in a journal is also important to me for verbally connecting with my present self and offering feedback on what’s on my mind.

6. Create a schedule and practice punctuality

We are creatures of habit. Following a familiar routine supports our emotional and mental well-being in getting things done, no matter the challenge. If you aren’t following a schedule, then it’s time to try. If you have never followed a schedule, I guarantee you will only follow it 20% of the way. That is okay because it is expected. However, give it a few days, then a few weeks, and I guarantee things will start falling into place as if it were magic. Create a schedule. Commit to it. Then practice punctuality. Show up to your work each day, whatever your work is (could be your job or your personal goals). Eat on time. Sleep on time.

Lately, I have been messing this up. I am getting back on track again. Trello’s Cronofy Power-Up help me sync my tasks to my Google Calendar. After things are planned, all I have to do is be strict with following my schedule.

7. Partner up with someone reliable

This has been a biggie for me. I screen share via Skype with a colleague on the same mission as I am. We both occasionally find ourselves challenged by our wandering minds, and keeping each other accountable holds us to our higher standard. Since we are working on the same things (building and growing our affiliate SEO business), we can share valuable insights we would never have considered sharing.

It’s going to take some balls and determination to find someone you can trust. If it helps, I do my best to stay open minded by treating my life as an open book to report and share the good with others. By placing myself in a vulnerable situation, I bank on the good of others to work with me to achieve our goals.

I met my colleague through a mastermind group for building niche sites. I actively asked around and searched for people to work with before landing myself in the mastermind group.

In Summary

  • Have a talk with yourself, and find out why you are holding yourself back. Journaling helps here.
  • Get yourself a working motto to get things done. I use the prefix “I need to do {task}.”
  • Take care of you and your time as if you were someone important. Because you are. Morning self-affirmations help.
  • Come up with a (bad) plan, then adjust as you go. I plan using Kanban scheduling, and bullet-point reflection highlighting the good with green and the bad with red for feedback.
  • Develop a morning routine. Include all your essentials like exercise, reading, meditating, etc. that will take care of you and give you the peace of mind to tackle your day.
  • Practice punctuality by creating schedules. I follow my Trello and Google Calendar with strict intent.
  • Work with someone reliable. I went out of my way to find someone on the same mission as I am to face our work ethic challenges together.

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