Mindfulness to Maximize Workplace Performance
During the last 20-25 years, we have witnessed attention to various methodologies to enhance workplace productivity and efficiency. Among strategies are workshops to enhance teamwork and communications, improvement in relationships informed by inclusive diversity expectations, and the promotion of wellness. Related to wellness are programs designed to integrate mind, body, and spirit for more intentional focus and output. Mindfulness is one such strategy.
Historically, mindfulness emanates from core philosophies of Buddhism, and has become a central tenet of positive psychology. In the early 1980’s, Jon Kabat-Zinn, PhD, at the Medical Center, University of Massachusetts-Amherst, introduced mindfulness as a means to address stress and illness. Now, mindfulness, involving meditation and other practices, has been incorporated in work settings. Companies like Google and General Mills have provided evidence for the positive impact of mindfulness on productivity, decision-making, listening, and reductions in stress. Additionally, mindfulness training has had a direct influence on the development of emotional intelligence with employees. According to a leading expert, emotional intelligence builds attention and focus which are the cornerstones of enhancing self-awareness, as well as empathy (Thakrar, 2017).
Mindfulness practice involves meditation, focused breathing, perhaps yoga, music, and even walks in nature. By engaging in these practices, individuals learn to focus and be “present,” and much less distracted. These strategies suggest that the workplace is a setting to promote learning, and consequentially, productivity. When you are mindful, you are present, in the moment, giving full attention to the task, and attending to a conversation.
If you engage in the application of mindfulness strategies, let us know how this works for you. What are the benefits?
Resource with free guided meditations and mindfulness podcasts: https://instituteformindfulleadership.org/
Thakrar, M. (2017). How to create mindful leadership. Forbes Coaches Council. Retrieved from https://www.forbes.com/sites/forbescoachescouncil/2017/06/28/how-to-create-mindful-leadership/#786ca264342a