How to work and do not forget to live with it
In this article, Jenny Dearborn, Senior Vice President and Director of Learning at SAP, describes how to stay effective while less straining your brain.
If you are like me, you probably often do several things at the same time, realizing that this does not bring you much benefit. We (the whole society) are nervous a lot, but we do little, thereby damaging our thinking and productivity .
Most of us believe that this is the modern norm of life - we are used to combine several responsibilities. The fact that we have taken (albeit reluctantly) our attitude towards things is preventing companies from taking the measures necessary to maintain employees in a state of high productivity and concentration .
A workplace where everything is on the brink, where a nervous, tense atmosphere cannot be called the workplace of the future. Managers have to make changes to the current work culture by developing a cult of mindfulness and empathy. This is precisely the concept that is referred to in the working community as “mindfulness” (that is, self-awareness or a priceless contemplation of the current moment). This technique involves the rejection of the hustle and bustle, and a complete focus on what has the highest priority.
Studies have shown that self-awareness (mindfulness) in work can increase the efficiency, involvement, ingenuity and innovative potential of employees and entail tangible business results. Below are three tips on how to increase self-awareness in order to cope with work faster and less nervous.
1. Take care of mundane, mundane affairs
Research in neurobiology shows that even a little self-awareness skill training can to some extent reduce stress and increase employee interaction and team cohesion . In other words, attentiveness, a sense of well-being, happiness and the ability to empathize are skills that complement executive behavior, you can learn this, you can practice and succeed.
There is one more thing: you do not need to go to yoga or spend a ton of money to become self-aware. You can start with a simple one - pay more attention to one, at first glance, morning routinebefore other pressing problems take their toll, for example, brushing your teeth or making breakfast. Listen to the sounds that accompany your movements, and watch your every action.
Another convenient point for practicing self-awareness is expectation. If you arrived at a meeting ahead of time, let your mind wander for a while, and then gently return to reality.
Neurologists are still trying to figure out exactly how this happens, but numerous scientific studies, including those conducted at the University of Wisconsin in Madison (UW-Madison), prove that the “restart” of the brain is very useful for the body.
By clarifying your mind and letting it rest, you will increase your efficiency, necessary for holding a meeting, and you will achieve much more.
2. Inspire your co-workers for self-awareness
Do not be self-aware alone. Once you have developed this skill in yourself, see how factors related to self-awareness, such as quick decision making or good social relationships and a working atmosphere, can affect the well-being of your organization and share your thoughts and experiences with team members.
You will not be the first to try to implement the idea of corporate self-awareness. Many Silicon Valley companies have discovered the value of this skill. Google, for example, offers appropriate professional short-term courses conducted by the ideological mastermind of self-awareness training in the company - Chade-Man Tanem “Mangom”, who joined Google in 2000 as a software developer, and now he performs perhaps the most pleasant duties of a fun guy .
As Mang spoke at the annual TED (technology, entertainment, design) conferences, he embarked on a journey to find the happiest person on earth and recreate this experience. Someone Mattie Ricard - a French academic who became a Buddhist monk, allowed me to measure my brain activity in order to determine the level of my happiness. He meditated, reflecting on compassion, while his level of happiness was measured and reflected in the diagrams. Inspired by Ricard, Mang began to teach corporate leaders how to use compassion in meditation and created a circle of students, setting up an entire Search Inside Yourself institute.
Corporations, large and small, use his teaching to their advantage, and leaders around the world, becoming teachers themselves, share a positive and modern way of thinking with their colleagues:
- The award-winning mindfulness program developed by Genentech Inc. increased the engagement of its 800 IT employees from lowest to second tier throughout the company in just four years. In addition, 88% of program participants reported that they began to feel the importance of their work and get more pleasure from it.
- Intel reports that its nine-week self-awareness program has brought about tangible changes, translating into a sense of happiness and well-being of employees, increasing their intelligence, creativity, ability to generate new ideas, ability to concentrate, as well as to reduce the level of tension in the team.
- At SAP, the training was conducted by Peter Bostelmann, Director of Mindfulness Programs. In order not to distract people with the concept of “self-awareness,” he called his course “Mindfulness Training,” and received many flattering reviews from companies around the world. One C-level executive said the program significantly changed his sense of happiness, as well as enhancing personal and professional productivity.
3. Practice conscious behavior
No matter where you learn the skill of self-awareness, at corporate trainings, yoga classes or at your own desk - practice is the best way to succeed. Mindfulness and self-awareness, like muscles - the more you exercise, the stronger they become.
The good thing is that you don’t need to be an expert in self-awareness, or spend years meditating to see the results. In recent studies, volunteers spent only seven hours studying the Buddhist practice of compassion meditation. After a daily half-hour listening to online instructions aimed at training feelings of caring for others for two weeks, participants showed significant progress in altruistic behavior.
This is an upward spiral of self-realization. In the world of constant information overload, the top is the right direction for us and for our companies. We must get rid of mental chaos and become more productive.
PS We recommend another article on the topic - How to choose the key aspects of life in order to invest energy and time in them.
Translation by Vyacheslav Davidenko, founder of MBA Consult