7 Mindfulness Exercises You Can Do at Work
by Michael Teh
Work can be stressful and overwhelming, and that’s only normal because we all work to pay our bills and put food on the table. There are days when we wish we could take a day off, but does that really help? What happens when you go back to work the next day? Will it be better, the same, or worse?
Well, in my experience as someone who meditates regularly, I would recommend doing mindfulness exercises while at work. In this article, I will share 7 meditation exercises that you can do at work.
“The good news is there is another solution: practice mindfulness at work is a good and constructive way to rest our minds, increase our performance and productivity, and better manage our work-related stress.”
Often at work we feel overwhelmed, irritable, unmotivated, stressed, and tired. At the same time, we feel down and stuck in a rut. Understandably, the next best solution is to take a day off to recover. However, this can cause unnecessary stress for others, especially when we take a sudden break from our work.
The good news is there is another solution: practice mindfulness at work is a good and constructive way to rest our minds, increase our performance and productivity, and better manage our work-related stress.
With this in mind, here are 7 Meditation Exercises you can do at work:
- Be Still
Find a private, secluded area. Try to take at least two minutes to do this. Relax and close your eyes while sitting quietly. It’s best to block out external stimuli and focus inward.
Focus on each breath as it flows in and out of your body. Breathe in slowly and imagine taking in nothing but positive energy. As you exhale, remember to let go of stress and worry.
Draw in the good and let go of the bad. Do this exercise few times a day.
If you manage to complete this meditation, you should feel refreshed and rejuvenated afterwards. You can also release your tension with this wonderful 2-minute meditation.
- Unwavering Concentration
Try this work meditation when you need a break but can’t get out of the office. Pick something out of the room that you want. It’s best if you can pick up something. Whatever it’s, it doesn’t matter.
Put all your mental and emotional weight on the thing you have chosen. Make an effort to soak up as much information as possible. What shade is it? Does it seem like there’s a trend here? Words? Focus on the details of the object as if you were taking a test on it.
Pay close attention to how it feels when you touch the object. Wondering if the terrain is smooth or rocky. Do you prefer it cold or warm? Corners that are rounded or angular.
Take at least 5 minutes to do this. When the timer goes off, think about how you feel.
- Breathing Exercise
Find a quiet place and count twenty deep breaths while doing this simple breathing exercise. Maintain a calm, steady rhythm of breathing. Think about how it feels to have air flow through your nose into your body.
Notice how your chest rises and falls as your breath flows in and out of your body. If you haven’t tried it yet, try letting the air out of your mouth and flow through your lips.
- Mindful Immersion
Concentrating on the present moment is similar to, but different from, mindful concentration. Mindful concentration involves giving one’s undivided attention to a single task, while mindful absorption involves full participation in a particular activity.
Focus on being present in each moment rather than rush trying to get things done as quickly as possible.
Another practise of mindful immersion is to take a short break at the computer to look out the window and enjoy the view for a few seconds. This is helpful to relax the eyes and brain and refocus.
When you fully engage in a task, whether it’s something you do every day or not, new opportunities for creativity and learning open up. The most important thing is to enjoy what you’re doing right here, right now.
- Practise Gratitude
If you feel trapped in a job you hate, you should first focus on being grateful for what you have. In what ways are you successful at work? Perhaps you appreciate the financial support. You’d probably prefer some pay than none at all, even if it’s not ideal.
Even if you despise your boss, you may have made friends among your colleagues. Office politics are annoying, but they help you learn what you don’t like about a job and what to look out for in the future. Gratitude will help you decide if you want to stay in your current position or if you should look for a new one.
Your resilience can be strengthened by focusing on the positive aspects of your job. Instead of worrying or falling into a bad mood when you dwell on the things you don’t like about your job, try feeding your mind with grateful thoughts to boost your mood and productivity.
- Chant a Mantra
Do you have a favourite mantra? One that motivates you? If so, you can get started right away. If not, take a few minutes to look for one. It could relate to life in general, a specific situation, or something you’re feeling right now. It could be motivational if you’re facing a challenge right now.
Are you prepared? Now recite the mantra or read it from memory. It’s okay if you need to look at it on paper or on a computer screen. You’ll probably find that you can memorise the words that really speak to you over time. When you’re alone, you can read the quote aloud or just process the words in your head.
Think about the mantra or say it with feeling. Repeat the quote at least ten times and note how you feel after each repetition.
- Be Kind to Yourself
The goal of this work meditation is to treat yourself with the same compassion that you show others. If you have been going through a rough patch lately and are dissatisfied with how you have handled a situation, completed a task, or reacted to something, it’s time to give yourself some slack.
First, think about what words you would use to comfort a friend or loved one in the same situation. If you can, look at yourself in the mirror but if you are unable to do so, that’s okay too. The most important thing is that you comfort yourself with the same words.
Then think of at least three admirable qualities you possess. Repeat these encouraging words or phrases until you are convinced that you deserve them. You deserve to be noticed, understood, and encouraged.
With that in mind, I hope these 7 simple mindfulness exercises that you can do at your workplace or anywhere else will help you refocus and strengthen yourself at work.
At the same time, I encourage you to develop a regular meditation practice, as you will find that you are more tolerant of your colleagues, make better decisions, and become more focused on the present, as well as calmer and more relaxed.
And if you are looking for someone to accompany you on your meditation journey, please feel free to contact us at email@example.com or follow us on our socials @iammichaelteh.
Part of this article is sourced from: Mynd.UK, Let’s Roam, The New York Times, Symonds Research
Michael Teh, 7th January 2023.
Michael Teh is a meditation coach devoted to a personal mission of awakening more people to higher consciousness. He teaches self-realization through meditation, qigong, yoga and philosophy.
Michael Teh Signature Workshop: The Essence of Life Series explores meditation as a powerful tool to realize our true potential. Michael has designed multiple workshops in this series to support his participants’ self-realization journey. Workshop Series 1 is currently running every few months on-ground in Kuala Lumpur, titled “Knowledge of The Self and Fundamentals of Meditation”.
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