Take a look at what’s right in front of you – what does your desk say about you? Focus in. Just like your locker was, this space – is yours. The way it looks and feels will invigorate you. Your desk is where you create.
As former athletes, we thrive on consistency of confident, authentic first impressions. Walking up to a desk that motivates you to be you – a place that features core memories and victory moments – awakens your beta endorphins, the same ones that sent chills up your spine when you ran out of the tunnel with your teammates and into crowds cheering.
Desk impact items
Your unique athletic mindset will help you positively transform your work space. Choosing one desk impact item can catapult your personal development, routine, and collaboration.
The best desk impact item I’ve seen is a simple dry-erase white board. My co-workers created a weekly schedule, and each took turns writing “quotes of the day” on it. The work white board encouraged conversation, inspiration, humor, collaboration, and story telling. Most importantly, it built trust.
Now, I proudly have my own $5 white board, generating buzz at my desk. Classmates and I cater our quotes to build conversation around what’s going on – sharing challenges, successes, and real stories developing in our lives.
Choosing your impact item
What’s most important to you? What pumps you up? What reminds you to be original? Items you surround yourself with at work matter. Choose a personal impact item that brings out your best. Decide on one thing that showcases your spirit. Print it out, post it up, and leverage it for personal development.
Amplify your story
Throughout my career in sport media, I’ve noticed amazing, intentional approaches to desk impact items. The memorable ones – on desks of TV directors, advertising executives, college coaches, summer interns, workflow managers, and athletic directors – are directly tied to personal, meaningful stories. These stories live on through championship photos, or even defeat photos. Team photo, or family selfies. They’re amplified, in framed “first-dollar earned” bills, and also in framed rejection letters. They’re funny, with cartoon bobble-head collections, and serious with performance goal sheets.
Build anticipation and routine
The moment you arrive at your desk is crucial. It sets a tone for your entire day. Routine will naturally spark from showcasing your core memories. Anticipate one time every day to look at your impact item, and remember how and why it motivates you.
I’ve found it helpful to be consistent and creative, with a ritual of tapping a photo or quote for good luck as I leave for an important media pitch or meeting – just like I did walking out of the locker room before a big game.
Transform your desk into a motivational catapult with one simple impact item. It will create value where you might have thought it was impossible.