Mindfulness has gone mainstream with companies as diverse as Google, Aetna, General Mills, and Target all having built extensive programs to foster mindful practices among their workers.
But what exactly IS Mindfulness and does it really enhance employee productivity and health? Why are companies like Salesforce and Genentech bringing me into the workplace to lead Mindfulness workshops? Read on to learn more about how Mindfulness is becoming a hot topic in the corporate office and three easy ways to start your own practice.
My corporate wellness client list is growing rapidly, with companies like Salesforce, Farella Braun + Martel LLP, and Genentech asking me to host Mindfulness and Meditation training for their employees. The work wellness trend is catching on and this investment of time towards employee health is paying off in the form of increased productivity, well being, lowered stress levels, and even reduced healthcare costs.
I am grateful to partner with leading companies in taking a proactive approach to the negative effects of work related stress. Mindfulness is going mainstream because IT WORKS and I truly believe that each corporate wellness initiative I work to create makes a powerful impact.
What exactly IS Mindfulness and how can you bring it into your office?
Mindfulness describes a moment-to-moment awareness of your thoughts, feelings, and bodily sensations. It’s a state of being attuned to what’s going on in your body and in the surrounding environment—being in the present moment without thinking about the future or what happened in the past. When you are mindful, you can have a greater consciousness in the present which is vital for any executive or manager, who, at any given moment, may be barraged with various problems that call for decisions under stress.
Benefits of Mindfulness in the Office
Mindfulness enhances emotional intelligence, notably self-awareness and the capacity to manage distressing emotions. It also delivers these measurable benefits:
- Reduced stress
- Lower blood pressure
- Improved memory
- Less depression and anxiety
One of the biggest benefits of Mindfulness that my corporate clients report is the ability to RESPOND instead of REACT throughout their day. This mindful working allows them to address urgent matters at hand with clarity and calm. Mindfulness is now becoming a leadership practice for more powerful work.
Mindfulness Is Going Mainstream in the Workplace
“Historically, companies have been reticent to offer mindfulness training because it was seen as something fluffy, esoteric and spiritual,” said Christopher Lyddy, an organizational behavior doctoral candidate at Case Western Reserve’s Weatherhead School of Management. “But that’s changing”. Especially if you consider that mindfulness has penetrated both Goldman Sachs and BlackRock, it’s clear that even businesses with no reputation for so-called “new age” practices see mindfulness as a good investment! Ive been excited and impressed by the diverse businesses that have contacted me for workshops, companies are taking a proactive approach to health and it’s growing by the second.
What’s the best way to launch a Mindfulness program at your company?
I often advise my corporate clients to take action from two sides: the top down and the bottom up. When team leaders AND individuals come together to create space for mindfulness education and workshops, REAL actions can result for REAL progress. Hiring a corporate wellness consultant to help build Mindfulness programs or lead regular wellness workshops can help companies prioritize health for incredible results. Contact [email protected] for corporate services and offerings.
Three Easy Ways to Practice Mindfulness at Work
- Power of the Pause. Taking a moment to check in with yourself is what Mindfulness training is all about. Use something in your environment (like getting into the elevator on your way to work or sitting down to eat your lunch) as a reminder to do a self-check in on how you are feeling and how you are living. Mindfulness training is all about becoming aware of how you are living in the PRESENT in the moment and becoming more intentional with your actions. Pausing to simply notice this is what Mindfulness is all about!
- Deep Breathing. Relaxation Breathing is one of the most accessible stress management tools available to us at all times. Using the body and the breath, we can calm our bodies, sharpen our minds and improve perceptions of and reactions to stress. When our exhales are longer than our inhales, our body signals its “rest & digest” mode (vs. “fight or flight” mode) and we are able to relax from the inside out. You don’t need a ton of time and starting is simple. Try taking 60 seconds to breathe deep into your belly. Inhale for 4 and exhale for 8. Try this simple guided deep breathing exercise for guidance.
- Guided Meditation. Finding an empty conference room to plug in your headset and listen to a guided meditation recording is a great way to practice Mindfulness throughout your work day. Everyone is different, you’ll want to find a style of meditation that works best for you. You can start with my “Take A Moment Meditation” (which I believe has the power to change your life) or explore any of the dozens of mindfulness resources in my book Balanced Body Breakthrough.
Host a Workshop with me to give your employees simple, actionable, and effective Mindfulness practices for improved health and performance. Contact and get started here.
I hope these three easy mindfulness exercises serve you in living life with a more powerfully present mindset. The mindfulness movement has proven that no matter what an employee’s role in the company, mindfulness can allow for a greater level of attention and engagement. An investment of time in the practice can pay dividends in the form of increased employee productivity, well being, reduced stress levels, and even reduced healthcare costs.
What is your experience with mindfulness? Either personal or inside your workplace? Let me know in the comments below.
Join the work wellness revolution and bring mindfulness to your team, contact [email protected] for Mindfulness workshops and offerings.
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