Dear Members of the Interior Designers of Alberta,
What would you do if you knew increasing your social connections not only made you happier, but increased your performance at work and made you more successful?
With the great success of our initial ID CONNECT session, I have been thinking more and more about this most important mission of our association, to connect and support our Interior Design community. In Shawn Achor’s book, The Happiness Advantage, he cites extensive research, “Studies that show that each positive interaction employees have during the workday actually helps return the cardiovascular system back to resting levels (a benefit often termed “work recovery”), and that over the long haul, employees with more of these interactions become protected from the negative effects of job strain. Each connection also lowers levels of cortisol, a hormone related to stress, which helps employees recover faster from work-related stress and makes them better prepared to handle it in the future.”
The COVID pandemic has created a greater sense of isolation and many of us are trying to tough it out alone. In a society that values the achievement of the individual and fosters competition to be the best, win the project, and get all the recognition, we have not set ourselves up to easily create a diverse social investment. Many of you also might be doing all right on your own, but what if you are leaving big potential on the table? What could be gained by expanding your network of social support? I would like to challenge each of you to make one social connection per day for the next month and see if it makes a difference.
As we begin to connect members in our Interior Design community, we infuse our small council with much needed diversity and creativity. The more we connect, the more we can do. Together we are a much stronger voice in our legislative pursuits for title protection, we can actually implement some of the many fantastic advocacy ideas, and maybe even find some time to give back to our community through projects such as supporting/mentoring our students, low-income housing projects, or other creative pursuits to enhance the well-being of people. To put it bluntly, we need more members to bolster our numbers, we need more volunteers to divide up the work, and we need our profession to be taken seriously by unifying all interior designers in Alberta under one association.