Stress at work is a growing problem. A recent survey suggests at least a third of people are struggling with stress, anxiety or depression.
The survey revealed that 34% of British people, in a range of different jobs, are dealing with poor mental health at work, whilst mental health problems affect one in six of us on a weekly basis.
Although it paints an uncomfortable picture for the workplace, there are options for you and your organisation which can help.
Mindfulness is a strategy which Google and other forward thinking businesses are now turning to, recognising the benefits on overall health, morale and performance of employees. Studies have shown that as little as 10 minutes mindfulness a day can help manage anxiety and improve concentration.
How can I practice Mindfulness at work?
There are a number of different ways you can use your work space to be Mindful. Here are three to try:
- Tense and Relax: Bring your awareness to your hands. How do they feel right now? Notice any pain or tension stored in your hands. Tense them tightly into a fist (if you can) and hold it for a few moments. Then release and feel the difference. This is the feeling of letting go. Keeping your hands relaxed now, take a slow, deep breath in, hold it for a moment and then exhale fully. Feel tension leaving your body as you breathe out, bringing your breathing back to a gentle, steady rhythm and return to your day.
- Go for a walk in your lunch break. As you take each step notice the world around you. What can you hear? What looks different today? Observe the sights and sounds and take them in. Don’t get drawn in to the “why” of what you notice, focus on what you see instead.
- Set aside “quiet time”. Ask your organisation if there’s a space they can dedicate to Mindfulness practice. Some companies now have dedicated “quiet rooms” where people can enjoy a few moments peace. If that’s not possible, make sure when you get home you spend at least a few minutes winding down, bring your attention to your breath and noticing how your breathing. There are three more Mindfulness activities available when you subscribe in a free eGuide ‘Relaxation for Busy People’.
Delphi is a qualified therapist and trainer promoting positive mental health, teaching strategies to busy people for effective rest and relaxation. She is a Mindfulness Practitioner, trained from the original texts of the Pāli Canon. Read more here.
© Copyright Delphi Ellis 2017