Humans at Work: Mind the Gap

April 7, 2018

Last month, I had the opportunity to attend the Creating Mindful Leaders Workshop, hosted by the Michigan Wellness Council and teams from Limeade and Whil, companies that are championing the digital wellness space. The workshop was centered on mindfulness, stress and performance in the age of digital disruption. To the untrained eye (or ear) this may seem like a siloed HR issue or "too soft" for Fortune 500 companies. To those of us who know otherwise, it seems the hard facts are finally coming into focus under the corporate microscope, by way of research and data.

 

As a relentless seeker of knowledge across the digital landscape, I was thrilled to discover the conference was right in my sweet spot - the intersection of digital, organizational psychology and human behavior. Over the past decade, I've studied these subjects in both academic and professional settings, in addition to studying the practices of yoga and meditation. The effects of consistent study and practice have permeated all areas of my life and continue to strengthen my ability to remain present, curious and accepting of things as they are – on the yoga mat, in the office and beyond.

 

The Creating Mindful Leaders Workshop touched on this notion, highlighting the significance of Emotional Intelligence (EQ) in the office in terms of self-awareness, self-regulation, motivation, empathy and leadership. Below are a few key takeaways:

 

  • Self awareness is about developing clarity within oneself, including high-resolution perception of our emotions

  • Our body often sends us information before our thinking brain fully recognizes what’s happening

  • We can help regulate our emotions by implementing the following steps: ​​

    • Stop

    • Breathe

    • Notice to create body awareness of emotions as physiological responses in the body

    • Reflect to label the emotion and engage the prefrontal cortex
      (the thinking brain)

    • Respond with more clarity, or decide not to respond in that moment

 

The Creating Mindful Leaders Workshop shined a light on the positive effects of mindfulness on productivity, job satisfaction and company culture. There is more and more research being published that support these findings. If you'd like to learn more about the research and data, or have questions about the Michigan Wellness Council, Limeade or Whil, please contact me directly.

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