Five rules for work (that may or may not be applicable to whatever it is you do):

  • Never start a day blind. Spending just 5 minutes the evening before checking your calendar and outstanding tasks will mean you sit down the following morning primed for your day. This also helps to alleviate the dread I usually feel on a Sunday.
  • Listen to other people, but not too much. If you have a good idea of what the right thing to do is, keep your aim. People's opinions can dilute this, and there is no one more irritating than the person who sidles up late on in a project and points out all the things they though you were too dumb to see. But, know when to admit that someone might be making a good point.
  • Take a break. Complex work and a looming deadline? Work up to the hard part, get a feel for it, then stop. Take a walk, drink some water, and come back to it later.
  • Know more than you show. If possible, have a little more work done than anyone is aware of. Some days are a little slower, and while good teams should understand this, having a little slack is helpful.
  • If you hate your job, do it well. The potential for even a hint of pride is far better than that feeling of being in purgatory. Smash it all day, look for a better job that evening.