I’ll tell you why it’s so important to stay mindful at work and how meditation contributes to professional success.
Today, according to the World Health Organization, more than 260 million people suffer from various anxiety disorders and phobias.
Such conditions seriously affect the work and overall ability to work. Therefore, more and more employers conduct trainings to strengthen the psychological health of employees.
Many of the world’s largest companies are successfully implementing mindful meditation practices and other activities related to eliminating stress and increasing concentration in the workplace.
What is mindfulness
Mindfulness or the practice of conscious meditation is a rather complex concept that combines philosophy, the practice of Buddhism and involves a deep focus on mental focus on bodily and mental experience.
This approach presupposes the ability to understand and be aware of one’s actions, and as a result, respond appropriately to external stimuli.
The founder of the practice is the American professor John Kabat-Zinn. While working at the University of Massachusetts Medical Center in the late 1970s, he opened a stress-reduction clinic in which, as an experiment, experts practiced meditation with patients.
After analyzing the results, the professor saw that the majority of people who underwent this practice noted an improvement in their condition and increased efficiency.
This is how the concept of mindfulness was born. Kabat-Zinn himself emphasized that this is only one of the possible ways to bring the ideas and practices of Buddhism into psychotherapy.
The basis of the new methodology was the concept of gaining the ability to disciplined, regular awareness of every moment of life, regardless of the events.
The concept of mindfulness began to become widespread relatively recently: it was discussed again five years ago, when such practices began to be popularized in Silicon Valley companies.
Research shows that mindfulness not only has a positive effect on the fight against burnout, stress and anxiety, but also develops empathy, a sense of cohesion, self-compassion and improves the quality of life in general.
But what is mindfulness in everyday life? And how to get there? Almost every day at work, we rush between tasks, burrowing into to-do lists.
Mindfulness, on the other hand, involves being fully present and aware of what you are experiencing at any given moment.
In fact, during this practice, you sort of take one step back to see everything from the outside, and consciously choose how to respond to this or that situation.
So instead of going with the flow, you take back control of yourself.
The art of analyzing
Instead of jumping between things, stop and think about what is happening to you right now and how exactly it makes you feel.
Then make an informed decision about how to handle the situation and how to proceed.
Depending on the situation, you can talk to your immediate supervisor about the scope of work, ask colleagues for help, prioritize tasks, or just go out for a walk.
It is also important to constantly treat yourself and others with empathy. Instead of judging, try to understand yourself and other people.
Constancy of practice
Like any other practice, mindfulness cannot be learned all at once. It is impossible without constant repetition and, if you comprehend it, it can positively transform the way you think, feel and behave at work and in your personal life.
Mindful meditation can do more than just help you deal with stress. It sets you up for greater concentration and attention. Over time, you will stop noticing irritants and obsessing over them.
You yourself must decide what you need to do, and not grab everything. Because it just takes more time.
A few tips on how to stay mindful on a typical work day
Start your day with results
Before starting your work day, sit down quietly with a cup of coffee or tea and think about what goals you want to achieve today. Often, looking at the day ahead through the to-do list, we feel overwhelmed.
However, if you start with the planning of results and then think about the tasks associated with them, this will help you more easily figure out how to build and structure your working day, and be more productive.
Reboot on your way to work
Try not to look at your phone, listen to music, or read the news while commuting. Don’t get distracted by anything. Just exist.
Praise and be kind
Before you start work, say to yourself: “Today I treat everyone kindly and with respect.” Often all you have to do is change your tone a little or say hello to someone.
Express recognition of what your colleagues have achieved, praise them for their speed in resolving issues, diligence and willingness to support a team or project.
Notice and evaluate
Allow yourself a few short breaks a day. Get out of the office, take a few deep breaths, take a little walk on your own. Or just go to the window and look out into the street.
Try not to skip your lunch break or eat at your desk. To fully immerse yourself in this moment, put your phone away. Just feel the taste of food and enjoy.
During the day, be sure to find a time and place to be alone. Close your eyes, inhale deeply and exhale.
Imagine that with each exhalation you relieve yourself of stress and tension. Relax all the muscles of your body, starting from the head and neck, and so gradually to the very tips of the toes.
This may seem like a daunting task, but to help beginners and practitioners, there are a huge number of applications that help you tune in to the right wave and concentrate.
Take on someone else’s role
You can start by really listening to the person you’re talking to, feeling their presence, and paying attention to every word they say.
And if you communicate with someone by mail, then before you send an important letter, address it to yourself.
When you open it as a recipient, you’ll see what tone it’s written in or what meanings you may have missed. This way you will start to respect other people more and understand their emotions.
Help those around you
When you are upset or feel bad, consciously help your colleagues. Research has proven that the more we help, the happier we become. In such a situation, our emotional fund is enriched, and we achieve greater harmony.
No matter what position you are in, what stage of your career development you are in, meditate and practice mindfulness.
This will help you in daily routine tasks, calculations, reporting, and, for example, in negotiations with important partners or in making deals.
Mindfulness will greatly increase your efficiency, efficiency and facilitate the decision-making process.
Thanks to it, you will be able to study more and allocate time correctly: after all, for example, combining preparation courses for some qualifying exams or tests with work always requires a special level of concentration.
And, getting rid of stress and learning to manage external factors, you will develop much faster and move towards success.