5 key things to renewing, thriving in our professional lives

spout bending in concreteEditor's Note: UNCSA Ombuds Jill Crainshaw is an informal confidential resource for the management, prevention and resolution of conflicts involving faculty, staff and administrators.

Have you ever felt like you want to reboot and reimagine your professional life?

We all experience those spans of time in our careers when we realize we need to get unstuck or disentangled from something in order to thrive in our personal and professional lives.

In my work with mid-career professionals, I have learned some strategies for thriving that are valuable for people at any stage of life. Here are five keys to thriving:

T ruth-telling
H umor
R espect
I  magination
V oice
E ngagement

Vital to thriving is to become honest about who we are and what we want for our lives. We need to become truth-tellers, in particular about our own desires and needs. While this is serious work, doing it with a sense of humor helps lighten the load. Generous, authentic, and hospitable laughter is a gift. And some of our efforts to get untangled from sticky webs? Humorous.

Respect for self and others is also a gift. And it is essential to thriving. Respect means paying attention to our needs. Respect means listening to our hearts. Respect means affirming our value.

Respect for others is also essential. We do not travel professional roads alone. Hospitality toward co-travelers builds healthy networks of relationship and support.

What do we envision for our lives and relationships when we set loose our imaginations? What possibilities d we see for our workplaces? Imagination and transformation are dance partners in this thriving work.

Again, we have to listen to ourselves if we want to thrive. What is my voice telling me about my life? What wisdom is my voice speaking about my wounds? About the journey ahead?

The beauty and power of listening for my voice? When I pay attention to my most authentic voice, I make space to hear the authentic voices of others. We thrive when we do this, when we engage the people around us in healthy ways. And we contribute to the thriving of others.

I invite you to consider some concrete strategies you have embodied to thrive in your professional and personal lives. I am glad to brainstorm with you about thriving in your professional life. Reach out to me at via a private email saombuds@gmail.com or private phone number 336-972-9182.

Learn about the Ombuds Office

Contact: Jill Crainshaw

Feb. 19, 2021

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