5 Ways to Practice Mindfulness @ Work
Almost everything you have to do at work can be improved by using mindfulness. When you start applying mindfulness to your workday, you learn to control your thoughts. Studies have shown you can improve your focus and control your emotions better when you’re more mindful.
I learned to be mindful by taking yoga classes. It was hard for me at first. I had never been interested in stopping to focus on my breathing. But I after I started thinking of my yoga as a ‘practice,’ and learning to really concentrate on being in the present moment, I saw all these great benefits begin in my life.
You can’t just break out in a Downward-Facing-Dog at the office when something happens that stresses you. I wanted to figure out the best ways to implement mindfulness at work into my day.
1. The first step starts before work. Take at least a 10 minute walk. If it is raining try to jump rope on the covered porch. If both those options are out, walk in place with high knees to get my body moving. Thirty minutes would be the best option, but I’ll take what I can get.
2. As your computer powers up, stop and breathe. Focus on breathing in and out and quieting your mind. Be in the moment.
3. Take a short walk mind-morning. Just step away from the desk and give your brain a mental break. Maybe you ride the elevator to the lobby and go outside to walk around the building. That burst of fresh air will help you think more creatively and have better focus when you return to your job.
4. Eat a good lunch. If you go out, try to walk and get more body movement during the day. If you eat at the office, try not to do it at your desk. But if you have to, reserve 5 minutes of quiet time or time for a little movement before you return to your tasks.
5. When the 3 PM slump hits walk right by the coffee pot to get water. Hydrate your body and your brain works better and faster. As you drink, quiet your mind. If you can, add a quick walk around the floor to your afternoon water break.
There are lots of other ways to incorporate mindfulness in your work day. I’d love to hear what works for you.