In our quest for productivity, we try everything from computer hacks to time management techniques. But we usually forget a fundamental factor: our feelings. Mindfulness is an excellent way to nurture these sides of ourselves with benefits that will carry over into your professional and personal lives.
What Is Mindfulness?
Mindfulness is a state of mind based on two basic components: awareness and acceptance. The origins of mindfulness can be traced back to Buddhist and Hindu teachings, but you don’t have to embrace a specific belief system to practice it.
Mindfulness can be described as living in the present moment. This approach brings calm by encouraging us to observe and accept, rather than avoid, our thoughts and feelings.
How Can Mindfulness Help You Be More Productive?
The most obvious benefit of mindfulness is that it helps you regulate your emotions by making evident the separation between your actual self and your gut reactions. You’ll still feel tired or frustrated, but you’ll be better able to deal with these difficult emotions, limiting their impact on your productivity. Additionally, mindfulness can improve the quality of your sleep and enhance your creativity by freeing your mind of unhelpful thoughts.
You can practice mindfulness anywhere, without previous arrangements and without apps or tapes. All you have to do is focus your attention on something neutral; it can be a spot on the wall or your own breathing. Breathe deeply and pay attention to the sensations you experience, from sounds and smells to visual details you may have never noticed before.
During this process you will have other thoughts, that’s inevitable. When they appear, let them be. Think of them as clouds passing by: notice them, pay attention to the effect they have on you, and then shift back your attention to your breathing or to whatever target you have chosen for this mindfulness exercise.
A Simple Way to Deal With Frustration
Remember this simple mindfulness exercise you can apply whenever you feel frustrated. Take deep breaths as you count to ten making an effort to feel the floor beneath your feet. When we feel frustrated, we are often unable to focus on anything but our own heightened emotions. Like the previous technique, this exercise will help you create emotional distance between you and the situation that makes you feel uncomfortable.
More Tips and Resources
These are some previous posts you can check out for more ideas to deal with work challenges:
- How to communicate more effectively at work
- 4 Ideas for entrepreneurs to take it easy as parents
- How to conduct successful webinars
- Adapt to new consumer trends with these ideas and tools
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