This week, corporate trainer Margaret Rose Johnston talked to the business breakfast about Mindfulness at Work.
Awareness of the power of mindfulness techniques is gaining momentum. The Mindfulness All-Party Parliamentary Group (MAPPG) report "Mindful Nation UK" had recently been launched at an event in parliament on October 20th.
In essence mindfulness is a method of training the mind using meditation. It can be of significant value in improving attentiveness and seeing things more objectively.
It develops strategies to deal with stress and emotions that can otherwise be disruptive in business. Typically 15 million working days a year are lost through stress and this figure does not include individuals who are attending work but not really able to fully concentrate on their tasks.
The key to mindfulness is the fact that the human brain can be adaptable and flexible into adulthood.
We can change the way typical business situations are dealt with. Developing better attention to the core activity and more resilient responses to emotional situations such as a difficult business phone call or discussion.
It is being increasingly recognised as important in all business activities, but particularly where distraction might result in safety issues.
Margaret demonstrated a simple technique for settling the mind using breathing. One could use this if you are very distracted and you want to focus your attention or after a stressful experience to calm the mind.
The business group commented that they could see where mindfulness training could play a role in improved memory, dealing with stress and keeping potential problems in perspective.