Unless you’ve been living in a cave for the past couple of years, I’m sure you’ve heard a lot about mindfulness. But maybe not related to the professional sphere. This is why today I am asking you the question: in your opinion, is mindfulness in the workplace the solution to improving your well-being as an employee?
Corporate welfare is not completely new, but it has changed a lot and is evolving at the speed of light. With the global pandemic, organizations are trying to figure out how to best support their people and create a more human world of work. They generally offer benefits such as medical, dental, and mental health professions but these are actually viewed as a “given” nowadays, and not as a solution offer.
The next version of Corporate Wellbeing I witnessed was benefits like yoga or Pilates, Kale fruit or crisps in the pantry or even a membership in a meditation app. This is all great but do people really need this? Because it is really about addressing the well-being of companies from outside.
People indeed need more. Especially in these unprecedented difficult times. So, the question is: is mindfulness the solution or just a buzzword?
Mindfulness is the awareness of the present moment, without any judgement. It is an option that focuses on your well-being from the inside out.
As an organization, your goal is to take the best possible care of your employees as you can balance what they need against what the company needs.
But today the needs of your employees have changed because the workplace has changed. The modern workplace is no longer just a physical location. It’s the place, whether physical or online, that people come together to work. Some of your people may still be on lockdown, or not free to travel or go to the office as they used to be.
Now, do you have any doubts that mindfulness at work is the key to better supporting your people and creating a more humane working world?
Mindfulness is often confused with meditation. It’s not the same and it’s important to understand that. While all meditation is Mindfulness, not all Mindfulness is Meditation.
You can be very mindful without sitting with your eyes closed and your legs crossed for 20 minutes each day. You can read more about how to run mindful meetings here.
It is really important to understand that people are suffering and that we can no longer separate personal and professional life. Organizations have a role to play in the mental health of their employees. There is no other option. This was the case before Covid. It is a reality now. The global pandemic just magnified it.
The well-being of employees is no longer a benefit. It’s a strategy
The World Health Organization has officially announced that burnout is now a legitimate diagnosis. Burnout is actually the chronic stress that occurs at work. This legitimate diagnosis is super important because it will only provide a different level of attention to burnout and how organizations approach it, and eventually end up as well.
Stress at work is inevitable. But the distress is manageable.
Even though the word mindfulness is fairly new in the workplace, it has been around for quite some time and so it gives us the benefit of having data. And I like the data because it helps build credibility. Yes, you will be challenged by skeptics, but I am here to help and provide all the information you need!
According to scientific data reports, leaders who followed a mindfulness program became less stressed, less burned. They had more energy, vitality, and greater amounts of well-being. This serves and confirms the impact of mindfulness on well-being.
If you want statically outstanding evidence showing the impact of mindfulness and emotional intelligence on well-being, download the full impact report at www.blissup.com.
I believe that it’s important to be clear on the wordings I am using when an organisation contemplate the idea to bring Mindfulness as part of their Wellbeing offering. Mindfulness is not the magic pill that will fix all your issues. Hence the reason I like to talk about it holistically.
If you google Mindfulness benefits at Work, you can see pretty much mindfulness improves everything: creativity at work, listening, multitasking, organizational agility, and so on. It does it all. That’s pretty cool.
Based on a lot of research, here is what we know regarding Mindfulness at Work :
🞳 Mindfulness’ impact on individual wellbeing is very high
🞳 Mindfulness helps individuals feel better in their workplace, whether physical or mental : lower burnout, lower incidents and degrees of mental illness, anxiety, depression, happiness, and so forth.
🞳 Mindfulness can help people feel more engaged, have more energy, improve their job satisfaction, even manage things like work, family conflict.
🞳 Mindfulness has a positive Impact on Individual performance. For example linking Mindfulness to doing tasks better. And also how doing mindfulness training can actually increase the amount the people help others in the workplace.
🞳 Mindfulness can actually predict less bad stuff as well, behaviours like retaliating against colleagues and undermining each other. What we start to see is that more mindful leaders may tend to have less toxic behaviours in their environment. There are some initial studies that tend to show that more mindful leaders tend to promote a better climate with their subordinates, a better relationship, so there’s actually greater connection in the workplace and then the subordinates go off and sort of engage in a more positive way.
🞳 Mindfulness can help people have more attention. It develops empathy and helps to react less.
I hope I have enlightened you on the concept of mindfulness at work. There would be a lot more to say, including how to start a wellness strategy for your employees. We will come back to that! Stay tuned or reach out to me!
Alice teaches how to Lead Yourself, Your People, and Your Organization for Extraordinary Results.
Alice is a HR executive, coach, mentor, therapist, mindfulness practitioner and teacher, public speaker, animal lover, nature addict, wellbeing advocate, wife, stepmother… or for short just a Human Being.