We’ve talked about how a mindfulness practice can be beneficial to senior leaders, but there are increasingly positive effects for employees at all levels in the organization as well. When employees are content and satisfied in their work environments, it creates a win-win situation for everyone involved: customers, clients, co-workers, and managers alike.
Research finds activities that support mindfulness improve an employee’s cognitive function and abilities, generating increased work engagement and productivity to help individuals focus on one task at a time. These two key factors result in a decrease of workplace absences and an increase in stronger employee retention and may very well explain the recent trend among employers—from the New York Mets to automotive plants in Motor City to well-known companies, like Etsy, General Mills, and of course Google—to create safe places for their staff to unplug and de-stress.
Mindfulness has the added benefit of impacting an employee’s personal life adding balance to the complexity of modern work-life. The lines between work and play are blurry at best and as technology ingratiates itself deeper into our lives, it’s imperative we take things one step at a time. A mindfulness practice encourages employees to readjust perspective on what constitutes as quality in their lives creating room to become happier and more productive individuals.
Mindful meditation is one of the tools companies are implementing to help their staff. Mindful employees are self-aware, secure, and confident in who they are and what they can do. Their careers align with their values, beliefs, and interests. They find their work to be important, meaningful, and exciting. Mindful employees live in the present.
We encourage you to try this 2-minute mindful meditation to be present in this moment.
Set a timer for two minutes. Sit at your desk and breathe. Acknowledge any anxiety, and let it pass. Breathe. Relax. Acknowledge any fear, and let it pass. Realize that your anxiety and fear is of your own creation. Bring your focus to the here and now.
Pay particular attention to the way in which your breath meets your body. Where does it travel as you breathe in and out? Does it travel to one focused place, or does it spread itself out? Does it meet your head? Your chest? Your shoulders? Your knees? Your toes?
Resist the urge to make any changes; to slow, or quicken, or alter your breath. Just sit, and relax, and pay attention to the natural way in which breath enters and exits your body. As various thoughts come into your head, as they certainly will, just notice them, allow them to pass, and return your focus to your breath. Start your timer and begin.
If that exercise piqued your interest, you can find a longer guided meditation on SoundCloud at this link: Leadership Landing’s Self-Awareness Mindful Meditation