Mindfulness in the Workplace: Creating a More Sustainable Way of Working, Living, & Being
No matter what industry we work in, we’ve all heard the importance of self-care and stress-relief for our health and wellbeing. So often, employers, supervisors, and mentors will ask, “What are you doing for yourself after work? In the evenings? On the weekends?” This question epitomizes the traditional view of work-life balance — we’ve been taught to keep work and everything else compartmentalized and separate.
Then the pandemic happened and turned everything on its head. It was no longer possible to uphold the former boundaries between work, family, school, play, rest, etc., as it was all happening, for many people, within within the same four walls of our homes. In addition, we no longer had access to many of our sources of restoration and refuge on the evenings and weekends due to the necessity of quarantine and social distancing.
Even before the pandemic, in my own experience working as a mental health professional in a large hospital system, relegating time for myself to the evenings and weekends was simply not enough. I knew I needed a different approach to be able to both sustain the difficult work I was doing and keep up the pace required for work in an inpatient setting. This reflection brings me to a question that has been top of mind for years:
How can we break down this barrier between work and life and bring self-care, stress relief, and refuge into any and every moment of our lives?
The key for me, and many others, has been the practice of mindfulness, what is often referred to as relaxed, loving awareness to the present moment. Over the past two decades, mindfulness has been a major focus in research studies on health and wellbeing. These studies show that regular practice brings a wide array of benefits for both mental health in decreasing symptoms of stress, depression, and anxiety as well as physical health in improving chronic pain, immune function, and sleep quality. Most recently, mindfulness has been linked to a greater sense of strength and resiliency, increased motivation, as well as a feeling of deeper connection and care for self and others.
How does this translate to our work environments? This research is also starting to explore the effects of implementing mindfulness programs in the workplace. Studies show that including mindful practices at work help individuals lower levels of frustration and emotional exhaustion while also increasing focus, self-confidence, and energy, all of which lead to fewer turnover rates, reduced burnout, and greater overall job satisfaction.
I certainly experienced this over time, as I began to bring the mindfulness exercises I was doing at home for my own relaxation into my daily routine at work. Because of my own experience working in high stress, fast-paced environments, using these practices to manage stress and prevent burnout on the job is of great interest and importance to me.
It’s why I feel so excited and honored to be able to share this knowledge with others through customized workshops and class series for organizations and employers.
Through these offerings, it is my hope to provide individuals with simple, practical tools they can use on the job to care for themselves while caring for others, something that I have personally found to be the key to ultimately preventing burnout and compassion fatigue.
In a workshop with HeartSpace Wellness Studio, you and your staff will learn about the practice of mindfulness and discover how to bring these simple and practical exercises into your daily lives, especially while at work. In addition, we will explore the profound benefits just a few minutes a day spent in mindful attention can bring to your overall health and wellbeing.
Organizational Workshops and Class Topics include:
Foundations of Mindfulness
Managing Stress in the Workplace
Helping the Helping Professional
Ultimately, by bringing these practices of mindfulness into the workplace, we no longer have to wait for the weekend to care for ourselves and renew our energies. We can learn how to transform any moment into one of care and restoration.
Learn how to break down the barrier between work and life and bring self-care, stress relief, and refuge into any and every moment of our lives by scheduling a HeartSpace Wellness Studio workshop or class series for your organization.
Bring Mindfulness into your workplace by booking a free, 20 minute consultation here.