26 October 2015 | Grads Corner | Guest Author
What is mindfulness?
...And why do we need to accept it in order to live a better life? Mindfulness is a state of living in the present moment. Being in the here and now; not thinking about the past (for it has gone) or the future (for it hasn’t arrived). Living in the moment is often hard but it is a useful practice to perform, especially in the workplace.
Imagine you’ve just got to work and have a hundred and one things to do. Email back your boss, prepare your days’ work, sort out paperwork that needs addressing-essentially the list can become endless.
You start to think about what you could’ve done yesterday and if you had done it yesterday you wouldn’t have to do it today. You resort to holding things off for the next day, where you think you’ll manage better but alas you end up at square one. What’s with all the panic and stressing over a place you spend a majority of your time?
Yes you might care about your job and worry if you’re performing well. But do you also worry about your well-being and your thoughts? Your thoughts are a powerful tool to utilise well and use to your advantage, or to allow negativity to consume and destroy your inner peace.
The famous saying ‘what you think you become’ is highly true since high self-worth and esteem is linked to more promotions and moving up the ranks in workplaces. So how can mindfulness help you in your workplace? First of all stop stressing and worrying about things out of your control. No you couldn’t possibly do anymore work if you’ve already worked twelve hours, it wouldn’t even be beneficial and you’d just end up more tired and irritable.
Second just breathe, sounds silly right? But how often do you take really deep relaxing breaths to feel calm. Don’t believe me? Try it now. You also need to get into the habit of doing one thing at a time. So from now on instead of multi-tasking, which can be highly stressful and unproductive since you just do everything half-heartedly; try completing each task you have in the given moment (if possible). Start to enjoy each task you do, it will help you be in the moment. If you’re photocopying something fifty times just photocopy something fifty times-you don’t have to be thinking of what to do next until the time comes.
When you deliver a presentation-enjoy every moment and revel in the fact that what you have to say is important and people have come to listen to what you have to say.
Don’t feel the need to imitate others in the job, you got your job on your own accord - you are worthy to be where you are!
Besides an original is worth way more than a copy, another famous saying! Finally, the most important way to achieve mindfulness is to meditate.
If only at first you meditate for five minutes, do it for five minutes. Switch off, relax and let yourself stop thinking-you’ll soon be surprised how calm and mellow you become. Mindfulness is all about living in the here and now. So you’re reading this now, what better way to end this reading by living in the present?
Tea enthusiast Mandeep, studied at Birmingham City University, and loves music, fitness and the arts! To connect with Mandeep you can follow her on Twitter @mandsband.