Let’s give a shout out to World Mental Health Day. There’s a lot to be said for mental health challenges and our productivity. I personally struggle with “good enough” which can take me down towards perfectionism or do nothing at all – why bother? And then there’s anxiety that makes starting something new/unknown feel overwhelming. And those four thieves we talked about yesterday – frenzy is my nemesis…oh boy, when I’m in frenzy it’s a mess.
Life moves pretty fast – if you don’t stop and look around once in a while, you could miss it.
– Ferris Bueller
Mindfulness – WHAT is it EXACTLY?
Mindfulness is the basic human ability to be fully present, aware of where we are and what we’re doing, and not overly reactive or overwhelmed by what’s going on around us.
Whew…that’s a lot of words.
How about instead – pay attention and stop multi-tasking.
STOP SKIMMING WORDS – read and understand the words – practice critical thinking.
Listen to the people around you… hear what they are saying.
Pay attention while cooking dinner, cutting up ingredients, washing the dishes.
Read the book without thinking about what else you could be doing.
Chew your food…savoring the texture and flavor.
Prepare the report, the analysis, the outline without the television on.
Enjoy the drive – feel the steering wheel, take that turn a little fast, notice the trees, give the guy in front some space.
Brush your teeth – feel the toothpaste texture.
Wash your face – enjoy the soapy feeling.
Just a couple of examples highlighting where we tend to go on autopilot.
And while I’d recommend having a mindful meditation practice all day long it’s not necessary to start being mindful in your day to day activity.
BUT – if you are interested – my favorite app is CALM. They have a free version to get you started and then a paid version if you want additional features.
And what does mindfulness have to with productivity?
For one, it slows everything down. You are able to recognize emotions and reactions before responding. Rather than rushing around like a chicken without a head, you have your wits about you. You read an email and understand the words. You have a conversation and communicate. You take the time to review your plan each morning and go about executing. You stop and look around. You don’t “miss” your life in a flurry of autopilot activity.
It’s a pretty amazing ninja skill to master.
See ya tomorrow.
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