I love to travel! I’m mindful 89% of my waking hours. I’m acutely observant of others….our differences and similarities. I’m more patient and accommodating. I’m more creative and in tune. I believe this is true of many of us when we travel…that we observe more, are more aware, more in sync, more thoughtful.
Tightness in your chest, pit in your stomach. Stress! Stress at work. Stress at home. What do you do?
Exercise? Eat better? Good long-term strategies.
What if it’s the middle of the workday and you’re on deadline. Head pounding. No time to go for a walk or to take a long, leisurely lunch break. Ignore the headache, stomachache, backache? Pop a pill?
Might work. At least short term.
It’s Monday. You’re at work. It’s noisy. You’re tense. You work in an open-office environment where sound reverberates off every chair, table and desk. Today, you’re not in the mood. What if, in the middle of your office, there was a pop-up meditation space, a “room” where you could wander in anytime and sink into a cozy chair and, for a few minutes, just breathe.
What if it were as simple as finding relief? What if the answer to increased productivity and creativity or better mood and stamina isn’t caffeine or drugs or green juice? What if it’s as simple as taking a step back and into quiet.
We’re all looking for relief from our relentless thoughts…thoughts about our impending deadline, job security, the kids’ grades, our stiff shoulder, the rent or the mortgage. The non-stop hum in the background is not just our open work space or the buzz of lawn mowers, it’s also, or more so, the highway of thoughts incessantly whizzing by.
Some of us find temporary relief in the No-No trifecta of drugs, sex and alcohol. Others choose extreme exercise or dieting as a patch.
While we’re waiting on the official start to the New Year, let’s write three things:
- what we want from 2015
- why we want it and
- how we’re going to get it
What do I want?
I want to be more productive. (Too broad. Start again.) I want to spend two hours of focused, uninterrupted time each Monday morning writing my book.
Why do I want this?
I enjoy writing. Writing brings me a sense of relief and accomplishment. I want readers to derive pleasure from what I write.
If you could have a space in your office building where you could go to relax for a few minutes each day, sit silently or listen to calming music, would you use it?
What kind of audio would you like…nature sounds, chimes, soft music (classical, jazz or chill out)?
- Would you like to have a guided meditation option on audio?
- Would you bring your own MP3 player and earbuds to the room?
- Would you like the audio to be piped in to the room or have access to individual headphones?
“According to the World Health Organization, the cost of stress to American businesses is as high as $300 billion,” Arianna Huffington notes. Staggering. What are we doing to our workforce? Or what are we not doing for them?
First, we have to acknowledge where these $300 billion are going. Health care costs to businesses skyrocket when employees don’t feel good. There are five aspects to health: mental, emotional, physical, social, and spiritual. We give our employees a comfortable, safe place to work and often a gym to exercise in…that’s physical. We are opening up the work environment to create spaces for collaboration…social. Spiritual is really not in the realm of companies to address. What are we doing about the emotional and the mental? We’re working our employees to the brink.