Why Meditation at Work Can Change Everything
When you hear the word meditation, what do you picture? If your answer is a monk in orange robes sitting in full lotus position somewhere in the mountains, we need to have a talk. Just because meditation has roots in many spiritual practices doesn’t mean it isn’t relevant today.
Meditation has seen a major rise in popularity over the past few years, and for good reason. The benefits of meditation are seemingly endless, and you don’t have to be a yogi to see that. In fact, just 20 minutes of meditation at work can make a huge difference in your life, no matter who you are. Here are just a few reasons why meditation at work could help you.
Meditation reduces stress
The office is a breeding ground for stress. Between the ever-growing to-do list, the impending deadlines, and the demands of your boss and coworkers, it would be a miracle if you never felt stressed at work. While a little bit of stress won’t kill you, reducing stress is extremely important for your health. Being overworked and overstressed has been linked to all sorts of health issues, including headaches, upset stomach, chest pain, insomnia, and more.
So we know stress is awful, but what do we do about it? Surprise, surprise; we meditate! Studies have shown that even a 20 minutes of meditation can drastically reduce stress and the negative physiological symptoms associated with it.
Give it a try; take 20 minutes out of your day to meditate and watch as the stress melts away.
Mediation helps you think more logically
A study at Yale University found that meditation causes a decrease of activity in the default mode network (DMN) of the brain. Also known as the ‘Me Center,’ the DMN is that part of the brain that makes everything about you.
What’s so great about decreasing activity in the Me Center? When the Me Center quiets down, you are less likely to take things that happens personally. From small injuries like paper cuts to massive problems at work, our Me Center likes to focus on these things, make them deeply personal, and blow them way out of proportion.
Meditation decreases this reaction. We become less likely to react with strong emotions to everything that happens. Instead, we are able to look at things logically and find the reasonable response to the issue; a valuable skill in the work place.
Meditation teaches you to concentrate
We all have those 15-page reports that are so boring they put us to sleep. We know we have to do them, but we just can’t focus. But what if we could? What if we mastered the art of concentration? Is that even possible?
It is! And once again, meditation helps.
One study found that just a few weeks of meditation dramatically altered student’s ability to focus during the GRE. Meditation trains our brain to concentrate and remain focused while also increasing our memory.
Imagine how quickly you could get through that report if you didn’t keep drifting off and thinking about what you are going to eat for dinner.
Daily practice is key
A little bit of meditation is great no matter what, but to get the above benefits (and so many more), it is important to stick to a daily practice. It is through daily meditation that we retrain our brain to be less stressed, less me-centered, and more focused.
For the next week or two, try practicing 20 minutes of meditation at work. By the end of the experiment you might be amazed by the results. We’d be willing to bet that once you try it, you decide to stick with it.
Has meditation at work helped you? Do you have any meditation at work tips we didn’t cover? Let us know in the comments below!