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Profile: Sarah Baker Andrus
Sarah Baker Andrus has been married for nearly 40 years and is a mom to two amazing young men who, to Sarah’s delight, enjoy spending time with each other and with their parents!
Although some of Sarah's craft hobbies have fallen by the wayside, she has continued to run — in her 60s — and enjoys meditation, getting lost in a good book, or binging on something juicy on TV.
Professional growth and learning continue to be a big part of Sarah’s life. In recent years, she’s become a student again, pursuing certifications in mindfulness which deepened and informed her own practice and enriched her life immeasurably.
Sarah and her husband live in Delaware, US. You connect with Sarah on LinkedIn.
In which generation do you belong?
Gen Jones: 1955 - 1964
Do you work? If so, what do you do?
Right now, I spin many professional plates and work quite a bit as I try to keep my options open and gain insight into what I may want to hold on to for whatever "retirement' looks like. I have owned a career coaching business for more than ten years. I also serve as assistant director of career services, working with MBA, MS, and Ph.D. students in the Lerner College of Business at the University of Delaware, where I also serve in faculty roles in the undergraduate, graduate, and Women's Leadership programs.
What would the 25-year-old version of you think of you today? How are you most different from her?
I think she'd be surprised that I didn't become a lawyer or a full-time professor. That would have made sense to her. She did not yet understand that careers can evolve and you don't have to be one thing or have a one-word job title. I am most different from that 25-year-old because I no longer strive to fit in above all else, and I enjoy breaking the rules. I have learned how to ask, "What's right for me at this moment," rather than toiling away toward someone else's goals.
I think she would be stunned, given my own traumatic childhood, that I became a good mother. I marvel at my relationship with my adult children and believe that reversing generational trauma may be my greatest accomplishment.
What has not changed about you?
I still struggle with my mental health, inner critic, doubts, and regrets. And, just like Yogi, I am still "smarter than the average bear." I am still always, always trying to do better and be better.
Good or bad, what about midlife has surprised you so far?
How much change and growth is possible even as we get older. And at the same time, how often the things I struggled with as a young adult show up as the things I struggle with today. The difference is the burden is lighter thanks to the perspective that age and time can bring.
What one habit are you actively working on these days?
Mindfulness. Because it has a palpable, positive impact on every aspect of my life and has dramatically enhanced the quality of my days and my relationships with myself and others.
What brings you the most joy these days and why?
Any time I can be a positive influence on someone or they tell me I made a difference. It gives my life purpose and meaning. And any moment my family can be together having fun is such a gift.
What are you most excited about these days?
Right now, I'm excited about a 40th-anniversary trip with my husband to Alaska.
If you could give a 20-year-old some words of wisdom, what might it be?
One thing that teaching undergraduates has taught me is that 20-year-olds do not want our advice or our wisdom. From their perspective — and they're not wrong — we have mucked things up. So, it's no surprise that they don't see us as especially wise or worthy of emulating. In fact, I think it's great that they are setting their own course - insisting on 40-hour work weeks and prioritizing their personal lives even when it means "quiet quitting." We are leaving them quite a mess to clean up, and I wouldn't wish my path of workaholism, constant striving, and no work/life boundaries just to get "ahead" on any of them!
And the most important question: Who was your favorite singer/band growing up?
Simon & Garfunkel, CSNY, Chicago, James Taylor, Carol King, Elton John, Billy Joel, who could choose just one???
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