10 Tips to Stay Mindful at Work And Boost Productivity

10 Tips to Stay Mindful at Work And Drastically Improve Productivity

In a study carried out by Christopher Lyddy, an organisational behaviour doctoral candidate at Case Western Reserve's Weatherhead School of Management, states that mindfulness appears to positively impact human functioning overall.  Research provides a wealth of evidence that mindfulness improves attention, cognition, emotions, behaviour, and physiology.

Mindfulness and its benefits are not just limited to your personal life. You can extend your mindful practicing into your workday. That’s good news because even those who of us who are enthusiastic about our jobs; going into the office is seldom the spotlight of anyone’s week.  

In between the meetings, the office politics, and the mindless tasks that seem to take forever, there’s a constant struggle to look for a good balance between work, family, social and other commitments, as well as the various media platforms we all face each day. Unlimited emails, text messages, and notifications have our phones ringing 24/7, not to mention the unnumbered hours wasted scrolling through social media sites.

How do we get through this and get the important things done???

Although it may seem difficult to break familiar habits at first, there are effective ways to stay mindful at work. Here are a few tips that can help you incorporate the principles of mindfulness into your workday to help you stay mindful and stress-free at work:

1. Connect with your senses.

Mindful exercise can be classified as a minute of consciously connecting with one of your senses. Just simply connect with your body and release any tension. Breathe in slowly through your nose and allow your belly to fill with the breath. Notice five objects you can see around you and release any tension.

2. Mindfully plan your day.

Mindfully planning your day ahead can create a positive vibe throughout the day and make you feel more in control of your day. You can maximise your time and make your day even exciting. Capture everything you need to do, make a list of all your assignments, meetings, and tasks for the day ahead. You will avoid feeling aimless and lost during the day.

3. Stop multi-tasking be a single-tasker.  

Multitasking limits productivity, it makes us less mindful in the long term too. Focus on just one thing to get the job done fast and easily. In this case, you will not feel stressed and overwhelmed with your tasks.

Researchers at the University of Michigan published a survey in the Journal of Experimental Psychology: Human Perception and Performance examining the effect of multi-tasking on productivity. Young adults were asked to complete a range of tasks, such as solving problems and identifying shapes but having to switch between them. Whenever participants had to switch between tasks, and particularly when the tasks became more complex, the research team saw significant time costs.

Trying more than one thing at a time seriously compromises our ability to complete the tasks safely and well. Single tasker can save time by focusing on just the task at hand and more likely you'll complete it faster than jumping around to multiple tasks at the same time. It also improves creativity, can reduce stress.

4. Turn off all the possible distractions.

Place your phone on silent mode, log out of your social media accounts, and set a timer for work. This is to break the mobile phone addiction and to reconnect with life.

Now that you’ve taken away the distractions, get to work! Reducing input reduces noise in our heads. Try to turn off the radio while you are driving to work and listening to your breathing instead. It may feel strange at first but it does work!

5. Take regular breaks.

Getaway from your workstation to avoid burning out. Brief breaks actually significantly improve focus.

Taking a few minutes to stand up, stretch, or take some deep breaths on an hourly basis can help you get your head in the game, making you more mindful when you return to work. Taking a break means leaving your work mentally and physically, your work will still be there when you get back.

6. Pick or set a reminder to be mindful.

Choose a cue to shift or to remind you that you need to switch to a mindful mode. For instance, you might pick a certain doorway or use drinking a hot drink as a reminder and a prompt.

7. Write down your goals and distractions.

If you feel distracted, write about it.

This will help you to distinguish what's hindering your productivity to focus on your work. To achieve your goals at work, try to jot them down this will help you focus on them. Being mindful can make all the difference.  

8. Slow down and breathe deeply.

If you take a moment to stop and smell the roses, you'll have more appreciation for all the beauty and abundance that life has to offer. Being in a rush leads to poor decisions and a misuse of energy. We end up living on adrenaline which zaps us of energy later.

If you take three deep breaths from your belly before and after every conversation, you'll be more present during the conversation and clear your mind after. Sit upright, stare ahead, and take deep breaths in followed by slow exhales in which you imagine your tension leaving your body through your breath.

9. Get outdoors!

No matter what the weather's like, learn to appreciate the now by enjoying the beauty of the outdoors, regardless of your scenery. Getting outdoors can significantly increase and improve focus and memory retention. You can perform better on creative tasks after being outside. And not to mention the multitude of health benefits.

10. End the working day mindfully with gratitude

Count your blessings during and before you leave work and keep your smartphone and tablet out of your bedroom. The light from the smart devices messes up your sleep pattern. You need a good night’s rest for a great day tomorrow!


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