No, meditation is not one of them. So go ahead and start reading!
The mind is a monkey. It jumps from one thought to another, with no logic or system, and is constantly wavering and unsteady. At 11 AM, 2-3 hours into your work schedule, waiting for that all-important contract to come, trying to reply to your emails and ensuring that you have ordered the groceries for dinner, your mind is probably all over the place. So here are 5 quick things (all of them in less than 30 seconds) you can do to relax your mind. And get your mojo back in time for the next meeting.
In solitude the mind gains strength and learns to lean upon itself – Laurence Sterne
This tip will work especially if you are in a meeting! If you feel stressed or under pressure to contribute, it is time to call a mental time-out. Tell yourself that for the next 30 seconds you will shut up. Listen. Not talk. Not feel under the pressure to talk. Let energy flow inward instead. It is amazing how even a few seconds of keeping quiet can energize you.
Close your eyes for a few seconds
Your environment is constantly bombarding you with stimuli – smells, voices, sights, and sensations – that distract and stress you out. So close your eyes for a few seconds. Take a couple of deep breaths. Vigorously rub the palms of your hands together and place it over your eyes. Let the gentle heat help you bring back your focus.
Get up and stretch
When you have a hundred emails to respond to, and a calendar full of meetings, you do not want to take a break. But set a timer or a pop-up message that tells you to get up and stretch every once in a while. Raise your hands above your head, stand on your toes and stretch it out. Or slowly bend and touch your toes. Or just stretch your spine by looking backward and over your chair. Does not matter, just stretch. And breathe.
One of the earlier fads about management that I loved was called MBWA – management by walking around. Let’s take that literally. Walk around, chat with your colleague, smile at the security guard, hail a greeting.. If you have an office, just pace up and down. Whatever you do, just move.
Bite into that chocolate
All you need is love. But a little chocolate now and then doesn’t hurt. – Charles M. Schulz
I am not kidding you. Biting into a piece of chocolate is one of the quickest ways to gain focus and feel good. Of course, you could replace chocolate with a dessert of your choice, but dark chocolate is proven to increase serotonin (the happy hormone) levels in your body. So keep a slab of chocolate at your desk, hidden away, for emergencies related to stress.
So there you go – 5 quick ways to distract and trick your mind into relaxing at work. Or anywhere else.
Disclaimer: First published on LinkedIn on February 4, 2019
Image source: https://quotes.iskcondesiretree.com/tag/mind/