Mindfulness sounded like an exercise dealing with smell flowers and cloud-watching that were too far away for me to have appointments, conference calls, and data center outages in my life. When I read about a ten-day silent retreat, it seemed like a punishment rather than an enlightenment. Spoiler – I would love this escape now!
The concept is to free yourself from electronic distractions, everyday stress and the stress and responsibility of work and family in order to find a stronger connection within yourself.
The Bigger good Berkley defines mindfulness as follows:
“Mindfulness means that we perceive our thoughts, feelings, body sensations and the environment from moment to moment through a gentle, caring lens.
Mindfulness also includes acceptance, which means that we pay attention to our thoughts and feelings without judging them – without, for example, believing that there is a “right” or “wrong” way of thinking or feeling at a certain moment. “
I found that the best way to start practicing mindfulness is to embrace the silence of your own thoughts. I wasn’t able to do this on my own, so I signed up for an 8 week course that helped me understand how to be effective! It didn’t happen right away, but with the practice I could see a noticeable difference.
There are many resources and websites that help us gain clarity and perspective through mindfulness. RelaxLikeABoss has a great post called The mindfulness symbol this tells how the practice and the symbol will help you to be present and aware of your surroundings!
Regular practice of silent meditation helped me deal with stress, but also made my decision-making skills clearer. A great way to create your mindfulness space is highlighted in THE BECK LIFE: Creating space for meditation: reflections for all senses,
Personal mindfulness journey
I start my personal journey of mindfulness with a retreat in Sedona. I recorded this experience and the subsequent study in a number of articles that were published on Thrive globally,
The best thing I’ve learned from meditation and my retreat is to realize that my mind and ego have an agenda that can be different from my soul. I have to be able to make room for my spiritual self to work around my ego, which often works from a place of fear. In contrast to my fear-based ego, my soul and my spiritual nature work from a place of love.
This quote from Marc and Angel is a great quote for what I’m working on in my meditation practice.
Meditation alone or in a group
Meditation alone or in retreats is a tool to process your thoughts in terms of meaning, purpose and direction.
I founded Together We Seek Retreats to help women explore tools and techniques that help them improve their ego voice and find their true self.
Many of us who have spent most of our lives on external metrics need to be grounded just to find that they are not as rewarding as we hoped.
One way to start your mindfulness journey is to try a meditation app. HealthLine has a listing of Best meditation apps of 2018 – Try them out and find out if they suit you.
Now is the time to search from the inside out to find the joy, connection and purpose we wanted to create here.
Business benefits of mindfulness
Let’s go back to the initial discussion where business leaders are beginning to explore quiet retreats to create a stronger connection to mindfulness. What are the Benefits for managers, you ask?
- stress reduction
- Increased creative thinking
- Reduced emotional reactions to challenging situations
- Improved focus
- Increase in memory
- Improved relationship interactions
The ten-day review of the “prison stay” in the Fast Company article may not be an experience that you are interested in. However, as an individual and a manager, there are immense benefits to adopting a more mindful mindset.
I invite you to look for ways to spend a few minutes a day to break away from your normal activities and connect with your inner mind.
JJ DiGeronimo – the President of Tech Savvy Women – is a speaker, author and thought leader for women in the fields of technology and girls as well as MINT. Through her work, JJ empowers professional women and advises executives on strategies to keep and attract women in technology to increase diversity of thought and leadership in organizations.
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