The Mindfulness Revolution – How you could be waking up to a healthier bottom line.

Article by Mita Mistry 23.03.15

 

Introduction

 

Isn’t it amazing that mindfulness, an ancient Buddhist practice used by monks in temples set in luscious forests is taking the world by storm? It’s true, Google has an entire department and dedicated area for employees to practice mindfulness, large city firms are recommending it to stressed executives. Smaller organisations are now providing sessions to manage the pressure of the modern urban jungle and even schools are adopting the practice to help children concentrate.   

 

What’s all the fuss about? Can it help my personal and business growth?

 

As you will know, running your own business requires a huge amount of energy and your mind is likely to bedistracted by work deadlines, politics and general work pressures. You might not even realise but you may have lost connection with how you are feeling. Did you notice if you felt well rested this morning or the flowers in bloom on the way to work or were you too busy rushing to get things done?

 

Mindfulness is a form of meditation to bring your awareness to the present moment by paying attention to your thoughts or feelings without judgment. It means you are right here, right now in the moment, fully alert and you mean business. By being fully present you will step away from everyday events so that you can respond to them in a calmer manner, as you will have clarity of what is actually happening in your life and at work. Being in the moment is the key to happiness it helps your personal and business growth at the same time it reduces stress .

 

Sounds a bit touchy-feely, what’s the evidence?

 

There is a growing body of scientific evidence that shows that practicing mindfulness improves both mentaland physical health having a direct impact on your happiness, concentration and productivity.

 

“The main business case for meditation is that if you’re fully present on the job, you will be more effective as a leader,” says William George, Harvard Business School professor, former CEO of Medtronic. 

 

Mark Williams, a professor of clinical psychology at Oxford, an expert in mindfulness-based cognitive therapy, and the co-author of Mindfulness: A Practical Guide to Finding Peace in a Frantic World reported after nine weeks on a mindfulness program participants had “an increased sense of purpose and had fewer feelings of isolation and alienation, along with decreased symptoms of illness as diverse as headaches, chest pain, congestion and weakness.”

 

So in essence, when you are physically, mentally, emotionally and spiritually connected, your reservoir of energy will be at its best and you will feel happiercreative, focused and your business will perform better, this is the bottom line, a healthier one.

How do I join the Mindfulness revolution?

 

You may not have time to attend a formal training program or sit in the lotus position for an hour and a half a day, although I can highly recommend it, but you can apply mindfulness techniques TODAY to stay alert, focused and calm by following these tips.

 

 

Challenge

 

 

Practice 

 

Benefit

Distracted, struggling to concentrate

Sit quietly and focus on your natural breathing or on a word or “mantra” that you repeat silently. Allow thoughts to come and go without judgment. Return to your awareness on your breath or mantra.

 

Mental clarity. Focus. Space for creativity

Physically drained by tension, technology eating on the go, rushing

Take a few minutes to Scan your body from head to toe. Notice subtle body sensations such as an itch or tingling without judgment breathe fresh air and let them pass. 

 

Awareness of how you feel. Listening to your body, to know when self-care is required.

Frustration with self, colleagues, politics, gossip

Accept the presence of frustration and let it go. Let others talk without judgment. Listen to what might be causing their struggle.

 

Less judgmental more understanding and compassionKindness to yourself and others helps relationships to improve and you to feel connected to your environment.

Stuck, unable to find a solution to a problem

Do nothing and sit quietly for five minutes. Contemplate the problem as if you are seeing it for the first time.

Fresh perspective by letting go of assumptions.

Smartphone compulsive behavior. Do you need to check your phone every 6 minutes?

Cope with cravings or addictive behaviours and allow them to pass. Just stop and breathe before reaching to check your phone and bring self to the present moment. 

Feeling more grounded, aware and centred in self. Saving your energy for things that count.

 

The effects of mindfulness techniques will be profound on your productivity, creativity, energy and performance because your mind will be clear and fully present with your employees, customers and tasks at hand. You can create a workplace that truly values a balanced relationship between hard work and energy renewal. So remember to invest in yourself and your business; take a step back, breathe, pay attention, stay with it and reap the benefits of waking up.

 

Further reading & tools

Mindfulness, how to get started.

http://psychcentral.com/blog/archives/2013/06/03/new-to-mindfulnesshow-to-get-started/

Mindful Leadership

http://live.huffingtonpost.com/r/segment/third-metric-janice-maturano-/52af543f2b8c2a25430007ac

How meditations helps at work

http://www.mindful.org/at-work/how-meditation-helps-me-work

A Practical Guide to Mindfulness

http://www.holybooks.com/anapanasati-suttapractical-guide-to-mindfulness-of-breathing-and-tranquil-wisdom-meditation/

 

Mita Mistry

Acupuncturist, expert and writer of alternative healingtechniques

@MitaMistry

http://www.mitamistry.co.uk