Mindfulness and being present in the moment have become increasingly popular topics in the workplace, and with so many priorities and technologies competing for our time, it’s no surprise!
Research has shown that being present reduces stress, improves productivity, improves cognition and provides more space for emotional connection. In addition to the data, being focused on the moment at hand also has important implications for the people you work with.
I discuss this concept in Principle #7 of my latest book: Love: Care for Your People and the Profits Will Come. To show care and appreciation for your team members and colleagues, it is important that you give them your full attention when communicating and collaborating.
I’m sure you can recall an experience when you asked a question or sought direction, only to see the individual you were communicating with glance at their phone or email inbox. While our colleagues rarely intend to be distracted, it can be disheartening or off-putting when we only receive a portion of their attention.
I also recognize that it can be a challenge to stay present, and it takes practice. If you find your mind wandering throughout the workday, I invite you to try these three practices to center yourself and come back to the moment at hand.
- Breathe deeply. Use your breath to help rediscover your focus. Breathe in deeply for four seconds, hold your breath for four seconds and then breathe out for four seconds. Repeat this exercise ten times, and when you feel relaxed, you can return your attention to what is in front of you.
- Take a walk. Take a brief stroll outdoors or around your workplace to help release distractions.
- Have lunch. Practice concentrating on the present moment by taking time to enjoy a midday meal. As you have your lunch, concentrate only on the experience paying attention to the colors, textures and flavors in front of you. By pulling ourselves out of a multi-tasking routine, we can practice being in the moment.
When you commit to using techniques to remain present throughout your workday, you will find that you have greater energy and more capacity for attentiveness, which will positively impact your work and your colleagues.
For more tips on how to apply the principles in Work That Works, purchase a copy of my book here or fill out the form below to purchase the companion card deck, which provides actionable tips to support your leadership journey.