"There’s a reason everyone from Goldie Hawn to David Lynch to the Google bigwigs are over the moon about mindfulness. A growing number of studies have shown that mindfulness practices, especially meditation, help reduce stress, promote better decision-making, encourage creativity, and lower the risk of heart attack, among other benefits."
It is the little things that make mindfulness. The first point on the list is about wishing others well. It is more than a rote thing. When we are mindful, wishing someone well is a deeply felt and received gesture.
Mindfulness Based Stress Reduction is a similar process where various meditative and contemplative practices are used as calming. Meditation is very helpful and brings great relief when practiced regularly.
Teaching Children to Calm Themselves New York Times (blog) Indeed, one of the biggest lessons for teachers and parents who undergo this training is that the very first step is learning how to calm, and care for, themselves, especially when they are...
When we understand mindfulness and meditative practices as strictly instrumental, it is fair to be skeptical. When we see meditation as the practice ground for living life, the two become inseparable. There is a validity in the idea that mindfulness and its practices can become the next fad. That is a real concern. It does not mean that we cannot use it to be better and make the world a better place by being more aware of who we are and what we do.
Become A Mindful Leader: Slow Down To Move Faster Forbes For business leaders, encouraging mindfulness is more than just being tuned in; it's a strategy to improve personal and company-wide performance and productivity, both of which support...
Slowing down, being present, being aware are central. What we need to be cautious of is that mindfulness becomes a technique rather than a way of life which improves quality in the workplace and world.
Guest Post by Rebel Brown Whether you’re a small business owner or an executive of a large corporation, you are leading humans and their minds. The two are inseparable. Did you know that the words man and mind come from the same Sanskrit root?
Ivon Prefontaine's insight:
It is not about leaving a legacy. It is about being on the path.
Mindfulness and being awake to the world are important leadership and followership qualities. It is about quality of life, instead of corporate bottom lines or distant outcomes in school. Being well and mindful allows those things to take care of themselves. We need to be and live in the present.
If we are simply keeping up at best, we are likely not operating mindfully. There is a need to slow down, be present, and focus on the people and things in our presence at each particular moment. This is not about financial bottom lines, but, when we are mindful, those are more likely improved as well.
A key is when asking questions is to listen deeply. I read Parker Palmer and use his work in my writing. The key person to question and listen to is one's self. This requires quietness that we do not find in the hectic pace of daily life. It is a meditative space when we listen to our self and to others.
Meditating has helped considerably for me. It is certainly not what everyone needs, but it slowed me down and allowed me to think about what I controlled in relationships. Sometimes the answers were surprising and led to me reducing the energy output required in dealing with certain issues. The first meaningful conversation we should have is with our self.
8 Ways to Get Grounded. As we stand on our two feet, we are able to see far into the distance. Our horizons are further and our world bigger than our four legged animal counterparts. We have developed our skills for reasoning and for imagining.
Over nearly four decades, Ellen Langer’s research on mindfulness has greatly influenced thinking across a range of fields, from behavioral economics to positive psychology. It reveals that by paying attention to what’s going on around us, instead of operating on auto-pilot, we can reduce stress, unlock creativity, and boost performance. Her “counterclockwise” experiments, for example, demonstrated that elderly men could improve their health by simply acting as if it were 20 years earlier. In this interview with senior editor Alison Beard, Langer applies her thinking to leadership and management in an age of increasing chaos.
HBR: Let’s start with the basics. What, exactly, is mindfulness? How do you define it?
Langer: Mindfulness is the process of actively noticing new things. When you do that, it puts you in the present. It makes you more sensitive to context and perspective. It’s the essence of engagement. And it’s energy-begetting, not energy-consuming. The mistake most people make is to assume it’s stressful and exhausting—all this thinking. But what’s stressful is all the mindless negative evaluations we make and the worry that we’ll find problems and not be able to solve them.
We all seek stability. We want to hold things still, thinking that if we do, we can control them. But since everything is always changing, that doesn’t work.
Ellen Langer's work has been and continues to be cutting edge. Her book Mindfulness is a great and easy read on a complex subject. She devoted some of the book to education and thoughts on bringing mindfulness, in a secular way, into learning and teaching.
Mass online meditation lets you zone out in cyberspace The Conversation ... with a meditation session. And Google has been offering its employees “Search Inside Yourself”, a mindfulness meditation course, since 2007.
Focus, clarity, creativity, compassion, and courage. These are the qualities of the mindful leaders. They are also the qualities that give today’s best leaders the resilience to cope with the many challenges coming their way and the resolve to sustain long-term success.
The real point of leverage — which though it sounds simple, many executives never discover — is the ability to think clearly and to focus on the most important opportunities.
It concerns me when we see mindfulness as a "real point of leverage". That diminishes the meditative purpose underlying it and shifts it to a calculative way of thinking. Don't we already have enough of the latter and not enough of the former?
The Conversation is running a series, Class in Australia, to identify, illuminate and debate its many manifestations. Here, Nicholas Biddle outlines how students' low aspirations can lead to poor outcomes…