Ok, we know. Work is work — having fun might be out of the question most of the time. But with a little effort, and without causing havoc or being disruptive, it is possible to make the eight hours you spend in your warehouse job a little more enjoyable, or at least manageable.
You can keep your eye on the clock until quitting time but try these tips and see if they don’t help make the time go by just a little faster.
Take as much of the stress out of the job as possible.
You know you’re going to have your day disrupted, at some point, by something unexpected and it’s going to throw everything off. Or maybe that one coworker that gets under everyone’s last nerve is at it again, and far too early. To top it all off, you didn’t eat breakfast and now your blood sugar’s low and you’re in a bad mood. The best way to address all these things is to do what you can to prepare for whatever the day brings. Have breakfast before coming in to work (or lunch or dinner if you work a shift later in the day). Try to keep the peace and get along well with everyone, learning to manage your frustration while staying productive and keeping everything rolling as smoothly as possible. It’s better to know things will happen that are out of your control, but you can control how you respond to them. If something comes up that’s confusing or seems to be in opposition to instructions you received previously, ask for clarification right away so you can do what’s asked of you from the start.
Get to know your coworkers.
You’re spending 40 hours a week with people on your team. What do you know about them? Not everyone will become your new best friend, but finding out what you have in common can help foster stress-relieving chats and help break the silence in a long day. Ask about the basic stuff: sports, music, TV shows, movies. See who has kids and who doesn’t — if you’re a parent, that’s a natural goldmine of topics to discuss and notes to compare. These don’t need to be big, heavy, wide-ranging conversations about Life and the Big Things in the Universe, but pleasant small talk can help make the day go faster.
Tune it all out.
Many warehouse environments are very noisy, with the sound of machinery running, things being transported, orders being filled, people shouting, etc. But you can help minimize that by putting in some earbuds and creating your own soundtrack. Whether it’s audiobooks, podcasts, or music, if you can safely use headphones at work, it’s a great way to keep yourself entertained and the time flying while you’re focused on the tasks at hand.
Take your breaks.
You are legally required to get a break for lunch every day. You might also be eligible for shorter breaks throughout the day — take any and all of them that you can! Walk away from your station and get some water, then do a little stretch to relieve your strained muscles. If the weather’s nice, go for a quick walk outside and get some fresh air during lunch. Make sure you’re staying hydrated, especially during the summer months when warehouses can get dangerously hot. Breaks are good for your mind as well: stepping away from a task for a little while allows your mind to refocus and wander a little, which can improve concentration and can help inspire a new way of looking at a problem.
Focus on the positive.
When you’re having a rough day and want to walk out and never return, take a moment to stop and think. There’s that moment in the Simpsons where Homer strategically covers the messages on his desk with photos of Maggie, so the words appear to say, “Do it for her.” It was a reminder that the frustration and stress of his job at the nuclear power plant was worth it, because his little girl needed him and depended on him. Even if this is “just a job” for you, remember that this position is allowing you to pay your bills, to have some fun, to be a responsible person and to maintain your lifestyle. Maybe it’s a stepping stone to something else. Maybe you’ve met great people here. Maybe the health insurance will defray the cost of a big medical expense that otherwise would’ve fallen solely on your shoulders. Find a silver lining — a new one every day if needed — and keep them in mind when you feel like everything is meaningless.
Time for a change? Sterling Personnel can help you find a new job! Start your search here.
The way we look at things can really make a huge difference when it comes to making work a tolerable experience. Setting yourself up for success, or at least a tolerable day on the job, really can be a matter of going in each day with the best intentions and trying to find the good. You can do it!
If you find that nothing helps, it might be time to look for a new job. Luckily, Sterling Personnel can help! Take a look at the jobs we’re currently working to fill and then give us a call, letting us know what sounds like a good fit. We can work with you to check your skills and background and help find a great new opportunity! Give Sterling Personnel a call and let’s get to work.