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What It Really Means to Thrive

Posted by on August 29, 2018 | 2 comments

We all have an intuitive sense of what it means to thrive. But what does it actually mean? For some people it’s about feeling happy and content; for others it means living up to their potential and succeeding at the goals they set themselves. What does it really mean to thrive? Is there a way of defining it so that we have a clear, common understanding of the concept? How do we implement strategies for thriving in work and life if it means different things to different people? Fortunately for us, researchers from the University of Portsmouth in the UK, lead by Dr Daniel Brown, have come up with...

Is Your Workplace Burning You Out?

Posted by on June 21, 2018 | 2 comments

It is no secret that workplace burnout has reached epidemic proportions. Many hard-working professionals experience at least one of the three dimensions of burnout as described by the leading burnout expert, Dr Christina Maslach: Emotional exhaustion. “I can’t do this anymore.” Depersonalisation. “I can’t be bothered.” Decreased sense of personal accomplishment. “What difference do I make anyway?” The result is not only poor performance on the job, but there is also a cost to the organisation through absenteeism, low morale and high staff turnover. However, focusing on employee burnout is only part of the picture. Burnout doesn’t happen in a vacuum; it happens in workplaces that predispose people to...

Is There a Place for Happiness at Work?

Posted by on May 17, 2018 | 2 comments

If you had asked me when I was a medical student whether there was a place for happiness at work, I would have laughed in your face! Back then I subscribed to the notion that happiness is a reward gained only through years of blood, sweat and tears. This notion is not uncommon, especially in the medical profession. There is a prevailing culture of overwork, success-chasing, and little regard for self-care. You earn your stripes by enduring the onslaught of medical practice. I remember one doctor even saying to me: “If you’re not depressed, you’re not doing it right.” It’s not hard to see that this perspective is not...

3 Unexpected Ways for Busy Professionals to Recharge

Posted by on April 25, 2018 | 1 comment

By now many of us are aware of the importance of self-care for both our performance and well-being. However, we also know that self-care is often easier said than done! Time is a precious resource; much of our daily allocation of it is devoted to the many demands that are placed on us at work and at home. How, then, are we supposed to find the time to relax and recharge? I have good news for you. You don’t have to conjure up extra hours from thin air (if only we could!). You already have time to recharge. It’s all a matter of the way you use the hours...

The Power of Reflection in Leadership

Posted by on April 20, 2018 | 1 comment

I’m a great believer in the power of reflection. I teach the principles and practicalities of self-reflection in the leadership development programmes I facilitate, as well as in one-on-one coaching sessions with clients. It’s not always easy to convince high-performers and leaders of the power of spending a few minutes in reflection. They are so used to being in action that reflection can seem like nothing more than glorified navel-gazing. It isn’t. Reflection is a valuable leadership practice. Those precious moments spent reflecting on your actions will help you to up your game and be even more effective in what you do. Here is a practical application of self-reflection...

The Real Reason You’re Burnt Out

Posted by on February 14, 2018 | 1 comment

Burnout has reached pandemic proportions in the world of work. Record numbers of employees, business owners and professionals are succumbing to feelings of exhaustion, anxiety and disillusionment, and countless hours of productivity are lost each year due to illnesses related to burnout. What’s going on? Why has all the progress we’ve made in the way we live and work not translated into less stress and greater well-being? Extensive research has been done into the field of burnout, most notably by Prof Christina Maslach who developed the widely used Maslach Burnout Inventory. The causes, indicators and ameliorators of burnout have been widely studied. Yet, despite all that we know, we...