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What is ‘Quiet Thriving’ – And Why Should You Try it in the Workplace?

Woman smiling writing in a notebook at her desk

You’ve probably heard of “quiet quitting,” “quiet firing” and “loud leadership” popping up in the workplace, especially when it comes to prioritizing yourself as an employee. Well, there may be a new more optimistic trend to try called “quiet thriving” that can surely give you a positive outlook. 

To make it easier, we’ve broken down what “quiet thriving” actually is and ways you can try it out for yourself.

See also: Higher pay, mental wellness, remote work: Are these the top workplace trends for 2023? 

What is ‘quiet thriving’?

Quiet thriving is basically the opposite of quiet quitting. Last year, quiet quitting was introduced to represent doing the bare minimum in a situation that you don’t believe is serving or rewarding you in the way you think you deserve. But, according to Glamour, while it’s tempting to mentally check out of your job, it can actually have a negative effect on your mood and leave you feeling even more unfulfilled. 

Originally coined by psychotherapist Lesley Alderman for The Washington Post, quiet thriving is actively making changes to your workday in order to shift your mental state and help you feel more engaged in your job. But how, exactly, do you quiet thrive?

Quiet thriving tip #1: Take back control

As neuroscientist and success coach, Laura Ellera tells Glamour, a good place to start is to think about which parts of the job frustrate you, and which parts light you up. 

“Take the parts that frustrate you, and ask yourself honestly, which parts of this do I have control over? Which parts do I have some influence over? And which parts are completely out of my control?” she says. When you look at the parts that light you up and the parts that you have control over, you can  work out a plan to incorporate that more into your every day. “Once you’ve worked on these, go onto the things that you have influence over and do the same. Then consciously agree to let go of the things you have no control over,” she adds.

Related: Vision board ideas: How to create your 2023 vision board.


Quiet thriving tip #2: Learn how to soothe your nervous system

We know how it feels when stress and anxiety enter our bodies and basically takes over. Ellera explains that, to step out of this threatening feeling, we should become more aware of how our body is feeling at that very moment. 

A good breathing exercise to do when we’re feeling stressed is to take three breaths in and then exhale as slowly as you can through pursed lips, imagining that you’re breathing out through a straw. 

See also: 10 must-dos during an internship to make a great impression.

Quiet thriving tip #3: Connect with others who rejuvenate you

Spend time and connect with people that make you feel safe. According to Glamour, when we’re around people who feel good to be around, it can co-regulate our nervous systems (because we feel relaxed with them), which gives us more energy and motivation in our workday. These relationships are also built with growth in mind, so you may want to steer clear of those who spend time complaining about work or their boss. 

Connecting with colleagues is also a good way to help thrive in your career. 

You may also like: The top 10 side hustles for Gen Z in 2023.

Quiet thriving tip #4: Normalize having a break

Split your day up into chunks so you can be sure that you’re able to take a break and move around. “Studies have found that we can only really concentrate on a task for around an hour at a time before our brain starts to wander. So as you push on throughout the day, you’re actually getting less and less efficient at your work,” Ellera says. Even if it’s going for a coffee run or a quick walk, your brain resets and you actually become more productive. 

Related: 20 Canadian jobs that may more than $300K.


Quiet thriving tip #5: Prioritize your health and sleep

Repeat after us: hydrate, eat, sleep, repeat. Your brain thrives more when it’s nourished, hydrated and well-rested with at least seven to nine hours of sleep. Our mental health depends on our brain, so when you’re not feeling good, appreciating the role and working towards a better career path can become more difficult.

See also: Better bites? These foods may be impacting your mental health.

Quiet thriving tip #6: Be proactive

According to the outlet, not every role has the wiggle room to dramatically change, but there are ways we can still mould the role to make it more fulfilling. It’s up to you to shape your role into something that works for both you and your employer. You can try highlighting areas of opportunity to your boss and explain why and how that can work for you. 

“Becoming known as the go-to for the area you thrive in will not only make you happier in your role, but also makes you a valued member of the team and increases your potential in the company,” Ellera says. 

You may also like: Half of Canadian employees plan to find a new job in 2023: study.

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