Productivity is certainly a mindset and everything begins in the mind. With a society that has been built on productivity principles the form of productivity is often blurred and measured by fast paced racing and checking off tasks on your to do list. When we are in this rat race of feeling productive we lose our sense of self, treating our mind and body more like an operating machine than a human being. This long term work pace results in employee burnout and according to data collected from Vitality: Britain's Healthiest Workplace organisation
productivity has actually been dropping steadily in the UK since 2014, with businesses losing over a month each year.
It seems pivotal that we must slow down in order to speed up, to ultimately integrate a balance between the two to function at an optimal state of wellbeing. Our mind and body are so intertwined, in fact, that we often confuse how we feel physically with how we feel emotionally and when we become connected and aware of how our body affects our mind and our mind affects our body it can become an incredible tool to set up hours of productivity.
'This long term work pace results in employee burnout ...'
Mindfulness practices such as meditation and yoga are becoming increasingly popular within the workplace due to their long list of proven benefits but ultimately what mindfulness practices consist of is maintaining a moment-by-moment awareness of our thoughts, feelings, bodily sensations, and the surrounding environment through a gentle, nurturing lens. In the presence of the moment we allow ourselves to pay attention to our thoughts and feelings without judging them, believing them or labelling them, we are just tuned in to the present moment rather than reliving the past or imagining the future. Through staying present and connected to your body and mind we are able to quieten the mental chatter, freeing up space and energy in our minds to have more clarity of thought and in turn make more conscious productive choices.
A simple mindfulness practice to incorporate in your everyday:
Mindful Wakeup: Start with a Purpose
To be done when you wake up before checking your phone set your alarm just 5 minutes earlier than usual this practice can be done in bed
- Sit with your spine upright, close your eyes and connect with the sensations of your seated body, bringing to your awareness how your body is feeling.
- Take three long, deep, nourishing breaths - breathing in through your nose and out through your mouth. Settle your awareness on the rise and fall of your chest as your breathing returns to its natural pace
- Set an intention for your day, ask yourself:
-What is the one thing or task that I can do today that will have the best impact?
-What quality of mind do I want to strengthen and develop?
-What do I need to take better care of myself?
-During difficult moments, how might I be more compassionate to others and to myself?
-What are the 3 things I feel most grateful for today?
- Throughout the day, check in with yourself - Pause, take a breath, and revisit your intention. Notice, as you become more and more conscious of your intentions for each day, how the quality of your communications, relationships, and mood shifts.