Maybe it’s the longer days, but summer seems to free up space for us to invite more leisure into our busy lives – most assuredly to hike or camp, to surf or SUP, to meet pals and colleagues for unencumbered happy hours. With this shift in focus comes more energy, too. A great way to channel this energy is to give back, whether that’s sharing resources with others, volunteering, Mentoring or participating in a workshop or conference. When you actively engage around topics that matter to you, you’ll find opportunities that spark learning and innovation, and foster important relationships.
Reflect and Refine
Many of us network like crazy or get asked to introduce newcomers to organizations, people and resources. One of the best parts of saying yes to coffee with someone who wants to pick your brain is that you get to assess where you are, professionally speaking, how you got there and where you’re headed next. When you share these elements of your career development out loud with a captive audience, you get another chance to reflect on your path or consider fine-tuning areas that might need more attention. Take every opportunity to get your own story straight while imparting helpful information to others headed down a similar road.
Share the Wealth
You’ve worked hard to meet goals and thrive in your professional life. These feats of strength are no small tasks. Your colleagues and friends are most likely following this same path, so why not share your accomplishments as well as the processes you took to get you there? That makes for great conversation at the pub with the gang or on a hike with your A-team. You all will probably learn something new about each other, your industry, organizations and optimal work habits. If you venture into a mentoring or coaching relationship with someone at work or through a volunteer outlet, you’ll not only be influencing someone’s professional development but will be honing your own leadership skills. By sharing what you know with like-minded people you respect, you might just get (re)inspired, too.
It’s a Win-Win
Our professional lives require nurturing, and part of that cycle is to branch out of your comfort zone. Cultivating habits that bring others into the fold is not only good business, it’s good for building community and lasting relationships, and keeps you on top of your game.
Stretch a little this summer and see what transpires!