Mindfulness at work means embracing what’s around you and what is happening right now instead of thinking about the past or trying to focus on the future in the workplace. The truth is, though, that there are many definitions of mindfulness, so it’s complicated to form a universal one. Why is mindfulness so important? Because it can improve one’s well-being as well as their productivity and motivation. In this article, we explore mindfulness at work in and out – read on to find out more!
Mindfulness at Work: Definition
Mindfulness at work is simply the level at which employees embrace mindfulness. However, the term itself might be described in numerous different ways, so let’s look at some of them first.
“Mindfulness refers to an individual's awareness both internally (awareness of their own
thoughts) and externally (awareness of what is happening in their environment)” (Ruedy &
Hyland, Lee & Mills' definition, on the other hand, describes mindfulness as “present-focused consciousness.” (2015)
Finally, Kabat-Zinn claims that mindfulness means “paying attention in a particular way: on purpose, in the present moment, and nonjudgmentally.” (1994)
So, what is mindfulness at work in the face of these definitions? The focus on the present, without judging what is happening and paying attention to both the outside world and your inner emotions.
Why Is Mindfulness at Work Important?
Knowing what mindfulness at work is, let’s discuss its role in the workplace. And it is quite significant since embracing mindfulness can affect both the well-being of your employees and the overall productivity of your company.
First of all, mindfulness affects the mental health of the employees by taking the pressure off them. Those who are focused on the present or don’t dwell on the past or fear the future are less stressed and can focus on their work more. Moreover, practicing mindfulness in the workplace reduces the chances of employee burnout and simply makes people more happy.
What is the role of mindfulness in increasing productivity? Well, for starters, it helps get rid of intrusive thoughts, thus improving focus. Secondly, embracing it is a way to have a mental break from the hardships of work and to return recharged, with more power to complete tasks efficiently. Finally, mindfulness at work fuels creativity, letting your employees come up with new ideas and strategies to stimulate your business growth.
Another reason why mindfulness is critical at work is that it helps build stronger bonds and relationships. It can be a true game changer for the teams that need to cooperate on a daily basis. Plus, it builds up a positive atmosphere, which is always an advantage.
Introducing Mindfulness in a Workplace
How to improve mindfulness at work? There are a plethora of efforts that you can undertake, including:
- reducing multitasking,
- preparing a space for mindfulness training,
- expressing gratitude to your employees,
- accepting the past and moving forward.
The key is to let your employees know about mindfulness and show them the ways to embrace it but also to provide them with space and time to do so. Some companies even go to such lengths that they organize special courses, for instance, mindful yoga, but you don’t have to be that radical.
How Do Office Pods and Acoustic Panels Help with Mindfulness at Work?
Now, let’s discuss what is the role of office pods and acoustic panels in embracing mindfulness at work, starting with the booths.
An office pod is the perfect place for those who like to embrace mindfulness on their own in a peaceful setting. Every person may prefer to do it in different conditions, and installing office booths is an excellent way to build a mindful workplace.
Regarding acoustic panels, their role is similar – they help practice mindfulness for those who find it difficult in noisy places. Yet, they have one more advantage – their aesthetics. Some of your employees might prefer a visually appealing space for their mindfulness exercises, and acoustic panels are a nice add-on to the decor.
The same goes for office furniture – you don’t want to have only plain chairs and desks, as this way you won’t create the perfect conditions for everyone.
What is mindfulness at work? It’s the degree to which mindfulness is practiced in your workplace. Embracing it can help you improve your employee's mental health and efficiency in general, so following the latest mindfulness trends might be a good idea. Remember that it’s a complex process involving educating your employees and providing them with time and place to focus on here and now – you won’t improve mindfulness at work overnight.
Did you like this article? Then you should read about mindful breaks at work!
Hyland, P. K., Lee, R. A., & Mills, M. J. (2015). Mindfulness at work: A new approach to improving individual and organizational performance. Industrial and Organizational Psychology, 8(4), 576–602.
Kabat-Zinn, J. (1994). Wherever You Go, There You Are: Mindfulness Meditation in Everyday Life. New York, NY: Hyperion.
Ruedy, E. R., & Schweitzer, M. E. (2010). In the moment: The effect of mindfulness on ethical decision making. Journal of Business Ethics, 95, 73-87.