I remember back when I worked in corporate, I felt like I had two different personalities. At home, I was so laid back and relaxed, fun loving and go with the flow. At work? What’s the opposite of laid back? I channeled every single fiber of my being into being productive and multitasking until I was blue in the face. I convinced myself every single day that I could do it all, that I was the jack of all trades: master of all, when in fact, I was doing everything just fine, but not great.
I had zero obligation to my own well being, completely ignored the fact that my emotional intelligence was being left behind in the dust, and gave everything I had to everyone else — and guess what? It almost always fell short. Because as you can imagine, I was often times exhausted and mentally drained. Can any of you relate?
Now that I work from home, things have changed in such a major way. I’m able to be fully present, channel my energy so differently since I’m surrounded by my own things, working at my own pace, and the deadlines I create are just that — my own. But I will tell you this: I wish I would have had someone tell me how I could chill the eff out and embrace a more mindful way of being during my days in corporate. It’s already such a stressful place (at times), and you’re meshing with so many different personalities. It’s no wonder we come home from a long day just ready to fall down on the couch and opt in for self-induced paralysis. I get it. I’ve been there.
So what if I told you there’s a way to carry the effort that you’re putting in to bettering your personal life, and ring it with you to the workplace? Would this make you sit up a little straighter? If you’re even remotely dealing with regular stress patterns, please, I beg you, read on. This could help — after all, that’s the goal here, through and through. To help.
The Importance Of Mindfulness In The Workplace
It will improve your performance at work
When you enter the workplace with a more mindful approach, you’re able to single task, rather than multitask. This will in turn ensure that you’re completing each project to the best of your ability.
It will improve your mood at work
You’ll feel far less pressure to do everything, which in turn will make you much more enjoyable to be around. Have you ever shared space with someone who was frantic and not all there? Let me ask you this: did it relax you and make you feel at ease? I didn’t think so :)
It will improve your professional relationships
When you practice being more mindful in the workplace, you’re inevitably setting yourself up for professional success. The attention to detail, both with your projects and with your work peers, will shine through and show you as trust worthy and dependable. Quite the combination, if you ask me.
It will make you a more effective leader
If you’re someone who has employees who depend on you, being mindful is beyond crucial. It’s such a lovely responsibility to be able to help pave the way of others, and it should be treated as an honor to be in a position to inspire those around you. Take it seriously. The only way you’re truly able to do that is by having the mental capacity to focus on what’s going on around you — are your employees needs being met? Are you truly present for them each and every day? Are you offering yourself up as a mentor?
Be a leader that they’ll remember, not one that they’ll celebrate once you’ve moved on to another position.
How to practice incorporating mindfulness in the workplace
Now bear with me here, because I totally understand that some of you may have jobs that are super demanding and require a LOT of your time and attention. I get it. But do you know wheat’s far more important than your job? Your life. Your well being. Your mental strength. All of those things far surpass your job — because with out those things being in tact, I guarantee that you’re not that good in your current role. Or if anything, you could be offering so much more.
There are easy tools and practices that you can implement into your work day to ensure that you’re able to stay centered, even when temptation has you wanting to scream for the hills and open up 3 Diet Cokes or head for the cafeteria for your 8th coffee refill. Here are a few:
Download a meditation app
Most jobs allow you to work with headphones in and I imagine quite a few of you drive throughout your work day, so this should be easy for almost all of you to accomplish some mindful exercises. Simply download a meditation app (Calm is a really good one), and when you’re beginning to feel some stress or overwhelm take over, simply plug in your headphones and take in the words/sounds. Close your office door, if able, or put your head down to give off the signal that you’re busy at the moment. Take this seriously. You’re worth it.
If a mindfulness meditation app isn’t up your alley (I feel you!), opt for a super soothing playlist. Here’s a great one. The bonus? You can listen to this throughout your entire day, rather than in small doses like the meditation apps.
Set an alarm
This might sound super nerdy, but it does wonders for me throughout the day. I simply set an alarm on my phone, and in the “label” or “title” section, I type something like “embrace calm” or “you’re doing amazing.” Maybe something like “take 5 deep breaths” or “go sit down and drink some water” is more up your alley. Whatever works for you, just give yourself the loving reminder that you need to stay centered. Eventually, you’ll be able to train your brain to think these things on your own. Imagine that.
Utilize your lunch break
I hear about this all the time: people eating lunch at their desk while they continue to work. This straight up makes me sad, because it’s in the title: lunch BREAK. Do you want to know why this practice exists? Because you’re intended to take a break from your day to day grind. The mind needs it. The body needs it. Your soul needs it. Break away from your desk and get outside. Go sit at a restaurant by yourself, or find a bench and eat the lunch you packed from home. Whatever it might look like for you, make sure that your phone and your computer aren’t apart of it (unless you’re using it to listen to that soothing playlist or meditation app ;)
Exercise before (or during) work
I know this approach isn’t for everyone. Maybe you’re not a morning person, or your work doesn’t offer long enough lunch breaks for you to be able to get to the gym and shower up. I hear you, but perhaps there’s a way around this. My friend Courtney does pilates in her living room for 15 minutes while her coffee is being made, and I used to simply run sprints around my building during my lunch break which would take me a total of 20 minutes. I’d have 40 minutes to freshen up and eat my lunch. Do you see what I’m getting at here? You can make anything work. You can stretch outside, go for a light walk so you’re not getting too sweaty. You can lift weights in your office, do some push ups and sits ups. The point is to get our blood pumping, your endorphins flowing, and give yourself something else to focus on other than your work.
So there you have it. Just a few tips and inspirations to hopefully inspire you to take the work you’re doing at home, over to the workplace. I truly hope you find them helpful, and would love to hear any feedback about things that are working for you! x0