Do you find yourself rushing from one meeting to the next, reacting to the latest crisis and left feeling completely spent at the end of your day?
Perhaps you are in a reactive cycle that is difficult to break. It may not even be of your own making, but is something driven by the organisational demands, or its culture.
The difficulty is how to break these cycles and set new patterns of behaviour. Perhaps you have even tried and found that you are back where you started within a few weeks.
The solution may be not in your behaviour, but in your thoughts. Our thoughts have such a big influence in how we behave, what we pay attention to and how we react.
Controlling our thoughts and ultimately choosing our thoughts is a way of gaining control of our outer situation. The inner world can define the outer world when we take a mindful path. The reverse is true when we do not.
Integrating mindfulness into your daily life does not need to be onerous or time consuming. In fact, it has very little to do with time and everything to do with awareness.
Small practices can make a big difference. For example, a five minute meditation before you leave the house can help you to stay calm and centred throughout the day.
Before every meeting, taking a moment to calm your thoughts, clear your mind and connect with your breath will allow you to be more focused, considered and decisive during the meeting.
During your day, taking some time away from your desk to go for a short walk outside will clear your mind and help you gain a sense of perspective. It’s easy to see the bigger picture looking at a blue sky, then you will find looking at an office ceiling and artificial lighting.
So can mindfulness make you a better leader? Yes it can, and a happier one and a more calm and thoughtful one at that.
Mary McGuire is founder of Agents2Change an organisational transformation consultancy and author of
‘Coming Home to you: A handbook for personal transformation’ – due out June 2017.
Coming soon! A half day mindfulness workshop in May, at a Central London location, for leaders who want to take their practice to the next level! Sign up for pre-registration details here