The best ways to create a winning corporate culture is to treat organization as a one whole unit, build a sense of unity and community, which promotes culture. The strongest leaders are team players who fosters bond of trust and organizational citizenship behavior in others and mostly have better mental health.

According to Jeffrey Kahn M.D., and Alan Langlieb, M.D., in their book, Mental Health and Productivity in the Workplace: A Handbook for Organizations and Clinicians. Productivity loss, absenteeism, lack of focus, and higher turnover are often directly linked to poor mental health. Research shows that people with symptoms of depression have a greater increase in time lost from work in comparison with those without symptoms of depression. Here are two science supported methods to reduce stress and achieve excellence at work:

  1. Forgiveness

Being competitive and proactive might be your tool to deal with your present situation and achieve excellence. But how to deal with the baggage of the past? That’s where forgiveness becomes important. Forgiveness is just like dropping away a heavy metal of ball from your hands and walking forward! The formula is to let go…

Forgiveness is a process of freeing ourselves from our past and living peacefully in the moment. This could mean be forgiving yourself or forgiving others. When we fail to forgive, we are caught up in past unpleasant events that may affect our performance and relationships. When we fail to forgive, we fail to work towards reconciliation. And we cultivate an atmosphere of blame, which cripples creativity. Or we become defensive, which hampers trust-building in the workplace.

Let’s see it with this example: David, the project manager, missed the deadline to submit his work along with the team. He’d had some problems that took more time to resolve. When the CEO found out about the missed deadline, instead of blaming, she offered special assistance to David and explained how to resolve the problem. David was grateful for the CEO’s gesture and came away with a sense of togetherness with the company.

When people work in a forgiving culture, they expand creativity, foster compassion, and build a sense of togetherness and team spirit. By the same token, when we forgive others, we free ourselves and move ahead with a clear conscience and without the weight of anger. Fred Luskin, in his Stanford Forgiveness Project, concluded that “Forgiveness may prove effective in reducing anger as a coping strategy.”

In her scientific article, Emma Seppala urges that forgiveness can bring deeper satisfaction. When we demonstrate forgiveness at our workplace, we create a friendly environment, an environment of creativity and innovation.

  • 2. Meditation and Breathing Techniques

Science has proved that practicing meditation and certain breathing techniques nurtures both alertness and a relaxed state of mind. A growing number of studies show breathing techniques are effective for anxiety and insomnia. These techniques influence:

1) Physiological (by stimulating the parasympathetic nervous system) and

2) Psychological factors (by deflecting attention from thoughts).

Speed and haste might get more work done, but it might be at the expense of our health. By contrast, a peaceful and calm mind can achieve more as it has elements of both peacefulness of mind and excellence in action. Practicing techniques for a relaxed and peaceful mind helps us achieve mental focus and heightened awareness. Meditation is the means through which you can strike a balance between activity and rest. If you decide to meditate even for ten minutes each day, accompanied by breathing practices, the meditation will start to calm your mind, discipline your brain and bring you joy. Sri Sri Ravi Shankar, creator of the Happiness Program says, The secret lies in our own breath. Through breathing exercises, certain breathing techniques and some practice of meditation, we can rekindle positive vibrations within and around us.”

With those two science supported ways, we can achieve professional and personal goals. We can move from stressful state of mind to a peaceful one. The peaceful and happy state of mind ensures wellness, happiness, excellent leadership, enhanced focus, decision-making, productivity, and greater concentration at work.


  • Pooja Shrivastava, Ph.D.

    Executive Coach, Organizational Behavioral Psychologist, and Adjunct Faculty

    University of Oklahoma

    Pooja Shrivastava, Ph.D. is a certified Executive Coach for Leadership Development and an Adjunct Professor of Organizational Behavioral Psychology at The University of Oklahoma. Her custom-tailored approach emphasizes leadership development, diversity and inclusion, and stress resilience to enhance the quality of the global work environment. Her 15 years of experience involves industry training, consulting, teaching, and coaching leaders from corporate, NGOs, military, non-profits, and healthcare organizations.