How to Promote Mindfulness in the Workplace

Mindfulness is by no means a new concept. But now, more companies are looking for ways to incorporate mindfulness practices within the workplace. A study from 2017 at the University of Chicago showed that even the presence of a smartphone can reduce someone’s cognitive abilities at work.

By providing opportunities for employees to step away from the screen and recenter themselves, businesses are discovering that they end up saving more money due to increased productivity and less days missed from work due to physical health issues.

If you are looking for ways to improve productivity at work and improve the lives of your employees, here are a few ways to help promote mindfulness in the workplace.

Create Workplace Mindfulness Zones

While at work, we are constantly being presented with emails, phone calls, meetings, and client emergencies. It’s no wonder stress levels continue to rise within the workplace. Thankfully, some companies are leading the way to bring a little calm into the nine-to-five universe.

Salesforce, for instance, provides “mindfulness zones” on every floor within the majority of their buildings. It’s an opportunity for employees to put their phones away and clear their minds. Your business can create your own mindfulness spaces within the office.

Floor-to-ceiling glass windows and walls are easy ways to separate a designated space without having to do any serious renovations to your office. You can also set up pillows or mats to set on the floor as a comfortable way for employees to take a ten-minute meditation break.

Offer Wellness Programs

A lot of companies are thinking outside the box to bring mindfulness into the cubicle. Wellness programs at work are a great incentive for all employees to spend a little time working on their mental health. Plus, it’s a huge work culture bonus for recruiters because it shows how much the company values the well-being of its employees.

Google hires massage therapists throughout their United States offices in order to provide massage therapy to their employees during their usual workdays. While not every business can afford to hire 35 massage therapists, they certainly can look for other ways to include wellness programs.

Your company could offer monthly yoga classes or provide once-a-week healthy lunches to all employees. Of course, we all know that a lot of stress takes place outside of the workplace but can impact their overall work ethic. External assistance programs are a great way to give your employees the extra help they need managing their life stressors and mental health.

Require Regular Breaks

You might think forcing your employees to take a break would have a negative impact on their productivity. However, the truth is that many employees end up suffering from burnout because they are unable to step away from the screen or their desk long enough to take an actual break.

Instead, they work through lunch and spend a few extra hours on the weekend trying to get everything done. In the end, employees end up experiencing burnout which is even worse for overall productivity. This ends up costing the company more money in the long run.

Taking a short walk around the building or sitting outside in the sun for even fifteen minutes can help to improve a person’s ability to focus on their upcoming tasks. Make sure that your employees are taking regular breaks aside from an hour at lunch. Require them to take fifteen minutes every few hours to step away and regroup.

Promoting mindfulness at work isn’t always straightforward. There may be some resistance from people who believe they don’t have time to take short breaks throughout the day. But as their manager or boss, it’s important to lead by example and show your employees the importance of taking care of their mental health.