Although the concept has only been formally around for the past two decades, positive psychology has made quite an impact across academia and workplaces alike. Not to be confused with positive thinking, positive psychology is the idea that there are small, practical actions you can take to improve yourself.
Not to be confused with the idea of needing to be happy all the time, because that’s neither healthy nor realistic. Instead, think of this as whether or not your mentee is experiencing positive emotions at work on a regular basis. If the answer is no, then something needs to change. Perhaps this means a solution as drastic as a different career path, or brainstorming better ways to employ their strengths in their current position.
Alternatively, something as simple as recommending your mentee to jot down three things they have done well that day will help put them in a better mindset, particularly if your mentee tends to err towards a negative mindset.
Engagement, in short, is about focus, concentration. If your mentee is struggling to focus on their job, as a mentor, you can help minimize distractions. Engagement is a crucial aspect to a thriving career. Without that piece, your mentee will not reach their full potential.
Given the amount of time you spend at work each week, finding a support system and network of positive relationships is key to having a positive work experience. In some offices, that can be more difficult to achieve than others.
It’s true—making friends gets harder as you get older, but it’s not impossible. If your mentee is struggling in this department, encourage them to take small steps to alleviate their sense of isolation. A simple of act of kindness goes a long way and will put them on the path to building the strong sense of community they crave and need.
Everyone likes to be appreciated; it’s motivating and encouraging, and it makes us feel valued as people. As such, it’s important to make sure your mentee is experiencing this in their professional career.
It’s not difficult to improve your mentee’s sense of achievement: celebrate small accomplishments and point out why those actions are imperative to your mentee’s growing successes. If you find yourself hitting a wall with your mentee on finding things to celebrate, talk with them to see if your mentee has a habit of comparing themselves to other people. That will help key you in on their fears and how you can help them overcome those.