What you need to know about mindfulness as a business leader — Samantha Morris
What is mindfulness? It’s such a buzzword, and for good reason, but what does it actually mean? And how do you practice it?
If you are anywhere like where I was, you may be thinking that this has something to do with gracefully performing yoga poses, and going on silent retreats.
You (like I was) could not be more wrong.
Mindfulness is simply awareness. And not just the everyday awareness we halfway give to our surroundings, but a moment-by-moment commitment to noticing everything. It’s about being gentle with ourselves and giving ourselves permission to live in the present moment without relaying the past or stressing about the future.
So much of our lives isn’t lived in the present; we think about the future, what needs doing, deadlines, kid pick up times, business needs, and more. It’s important to also be grateful for the lives we have and take some time to just exist. Whether that’s alone or with loved ones, mindfulness can help ground you in a world that is whisking us every which way.
You may not find me meditating (something I should do actually), but I do make the conscious effort to stop and take in where I am and what I am doing. As I work with people I need to be able to focus on them and not be distracted by anything going on in my life. Hence my proactive engagement of mindfulness as a leader, coach and mother. We can engage with the tenets of mindfulness. I do this when I’m with clients, when I go for walks, and every morning when I get up.
Mindfulness allows a broader perspective.
As business leaders we need to separate ourselves somewhat from embedded belief systems and initial reactions that lie in the subconscious from lived experiences; and take time to truly view the landscape before us. This may sound somewhat removed, but having an overview rather than a small focus can give you the broader insights you need to mindfully make better decisions, be present and do good.
Now, it sounds simple, but many that try to be ‘mindful’ may find it difficult knowing where to start. A few strategies:
- Go on a walk in nature, notice all the plants, breathe in the air, just be there
- Focus on your breathing, notice when you take pauses and what the air feels like
- Take mini breaks throughout the day to focus on being still
- Take one thing at a time — productive and mindful!
- Create a journal — jot down things or take time to really write and be connected to what you’re thinking and feeling in the moment
Elise Bialylew has written a brilliant article titled 6 Ways Mindfulness Can Make You a Better Entrepreneur. It this article she identifies these six points about mindfulness in business -
- Tap into deeper creativity and innovation
- Communicate more effectively under stress
- Manage self doubt
- Manage the discomfort of uncertainty
- Sharpen your focus
Originally published at https://www.samanthamorris.fempirecoach.com.au on June 7, 2021.