Increasing Inspiration Everyday

We’ve all heard the saying, ‘do what you love and you’ll never work a day in your life’, but is that always true? With about 260 work days in a typical 5-days-a-week work schedule, it can be daunting to love every-single-one-of-them.

Sometimes work, well, feels like work, and is more in line with Thomas Edison’s observation that “genius is 1% inspiration and 99% perspiration.” And whether your work consists of demanding physical labor, running a busy household, or toiling away in an office, we can all agree that few, if any, occupations are immune to the dreaded burnout (if yours is, please let us know!).

So what are some ways we can increase that 1% of inspiration? How do we fall in love again with what we spend most of our time doing?

Step Outside of Your World

“The real voyage of discovery consists not in seeking new landscapes, but in having new eyes.” – Marcel Proust

Sometimes looking at the same workload day after day can create a kind of occupational highway blindness. Taking an interest in what friends and co-workers are working on not only gives our brain a break away from our routine, but can also renew our vision and inspire a fresh level of engagement. At Zappos, one version of this is often referred to as ‘serendipitous interactions’; the idea that stepping outside of your world a little more can foster new ideas as well as create co-working opportunities.

Do More of What You Love When You Aren’t at Work

“I can elect something I love and absorb myself in it.” – Anaïs Nin

The technological advances of this day and age are a double-edged sword. With the myriad of instant communication possibilities also comes the Sisyphus-like inbox and to-do list from which we can’t ever seem to unplug! However, learning to step away and completely throw ourselves into something we love that’s totally unrelated to work reminds us why we’re working in the first place! Quality of life is what (hopefully) makes the working worthwhile. Feeding a passion for traveling or a penchant for painting keeps us inspired in our personal lives and energizes us when we’re both in and out of the workplace.

Breathe In, Breathe Out

“If you want to conquer the anxiety of life, live in the moment, live in the breath.” – Amit Ray

Breathe. Sounds easy, right? We do it autonomously, yet not always mindfully. As simple as it sounds, learning how to stay in the now while at work can save us a lot of stress and uninvited worry. Closely tied to fighting off daily distractions is resisting the temptation to multitask. Studies show that multitasking divides our attention and inhibits true productivity. One way that Zappos and other companies are helping employees reduce stress and find their focus is by offering on-site meditation classes. Whether you only have a few minutes or a full lunch break to clear your mind, the benefits can be far reaching.

Want to learn more about Zappos’ best practices, unique company culture, or WOW customer service philosophy? Check out Zappos Insights