In the most simplified terms, “What exactly is mindfulness?”
Mindfulness is, to put simply, ‘paying attention’ – something we’ve forgotten in this age of mobile apps and Google search. And then you’ve got the social media and YouTube that constantly try and pull you out of work mode. This often lowers your productivity and you spend longer hours staring at your laptops when you should rather be spending time on other activities that are equally important in life.
Somebody said it right – if you’re spending more hours than you should at work then probably you’re not doing your work properly.
Practicing ‘mindfulness’ – a Buddhist meditation technique – can help you achieve a much higher level of concentration which will raise the quality of your work. Here are a few pointers that will help you practice this great technique that will train your mind to become stable and think deeper.
1) Get off the grid for a few minutes every day
Put your phones away and switch off your computer screens. Tell your colleagues that you’ll be unavailable for the next 15 to 30 minutes. This is the time that you devote to just yourself and your thoughts. Concentrate on your breathing (count it) and let your mind wander. Eventually, train it to come back.
2) Anytime and anywhere
Had a bad day with the boss or you find yourself literally dragging yourself to the office? Stop at that very moment and take a few minutes off. Inhale and exhale a few times, then calm down. This helps you reduce your stress and anxiety levels and puts you back on the path.
3) Good habits never killed anybody
Any well-meaning Yoga teacher will tell you that Yoga is not something that you practice every day and forget about it. Yoga is actually a way of life. Similarly, ingrain mindfulness into your daily routine because the benefits from a regular practice of mindfulness can reap rich benefits.
4) Get help
If you’re a beginner or someone who needs to be shown a path, connect with someone who has been practicing this for a while. Alternatively, there are a lot of help available on the internet that will guide you in this practice.
5) Don’t compete unnecessarily
Be a man of few words and instead observe. Self-observation is an idea that can help in understanding a lot of things which a regular person will surpass. Don’t vie for your boss’s attention and instead give her solid work. Set realistic deadlines that suit your working methods and try and deliver before time. Do not try and please someone and most importantly get out of office and get a life after work.
6) Involve your friends/colleagues
Practicing meditation is not being anti-social and if you’re a social butterfly then there’s no harm in getting a bunch of friends together and practicing mindfulness in a group. Group activities are always fun and you can even share your thoughts and ideas about this. It can be a great group bonding exercise.
7) Walk and talk
Take a short walk to the grocery store or to the nearby park. Talk to yourself when walking. Observe people around you and do not carry any gadgets with you. Learn the names of the trees and flowers that grow in your area and try and connect to nature. You’ll feel the difference. Practicing mindfulness at work has only positive outcomes it’ll help you increase your focus, creativity and grasping power. It’ll do wonders to your mental and physical resilience and will fill you up with empathy for others. It’ll help you with a good night’s sleep.