In addition to understanding toxic and abusive work environments, we must comprehend and embrace what good organizations can give to the world. Healthy workplaces nurture, among other things, growth-fostering relationships.
The little card pictured above was distributed at the annual Workshop on Humiliation and Violent Conflict, hosted by Human Dignity and Humiliation Studies (HumanDHS) last week in New York. “The Five Good Things” come from the late Jean Baker Miller, a psychiatrist and pioneer in the field of relational psychology:
Growth-fostering relationships empower all people involved in them.These relationships are characterized by:
1. A sense of zest or well-being that comes from connecting with another person or other persons.
2. The ability and motivation to take action in the relationship as well as other situations.
3. Increased knowledge of oneself and the other person(s).
4. An increased sense of worth.
5. A desire for more connections beyond the particular one.
Let’s apply “The Five Good Things” to the workplace! Quality organizations understand that psychologically healthy work environments not only make our work lives more rewarding, but also fuel productivity and positive results. It’s all good, with no downsides.
Jean Baker Miller’s “Five Good Things” and the work of relational psychologist and HumanDHS director Linda Hartling strongly inspired the New Workplace Institute’s “Eightfold Path to a Psychologically Healthy Workplace.”