Updated: Jul 8
Research-proven benefits that enhance the emotional and physical health of employees
Around the world, corporate leaders are recognizing the importance of mindfulness training as an integral part of a healthcare benefits program. Trendsetters from Google and Apple to the US Marine Corp., are incorporating mindfulness training as a proven tool in the management of stress and the promotion of mental and physical health in their workforce. This article provides an introduction to the practice of mindfulness, an overview of the practice, and the proven benefits in both work and home environments.
What is “mindfulness?”
Mindfulness is fundamentally a way of training the mind to be present and focused in a particular moment. It is based on Buddhist tradition that involves clearing the mind of distractions so that full attention can be directed to what one is thinking, doing, or feeling.
In a world where multi-tasking is considered a sought-after skill, and messages are often sent and received hundreds of times throughout the day, staying focused can be a challenge. Mindfulness helps individuals find clarity of thought, and a compassionate space within the mind. Through mindfulness training, courage and resilience are nurtured, stress is reduced, and decisions are made with greater clarity.
How does mindfulness training benefit employees?
A recent review of mindfulness research concluded that mindfulness is “a robust concept that should be widely implemented in the organizational work setting to promote employees’ mental and physical health, enhance a variety of superior organizational outcomes, and ensure the organization’s success and sustainability.”
Researchers from around the world have been studying the effects of mindfulness training for several decades. Their studies have proven that mindfulness training can improve short-term memory, attention span, and the ability to perform complex cognitive tasks. The benefits of mindfulness go far beyond the workplace however. Studies have also determined that mindful individuals tend to experience higher quality relationships and are more inclined to think creatively.
What are the top five benefits gained by mindfulness training?
Increased Productivity – Research suggests that meditation strengthens the prefrontal cortex, which is the human center of conscious thought and reasoning. This significant discovery points to a link between mindfulness and an enhanced ability to maintain focus, especially while under stress.
Decreased Anxiety and Stress – Scientific evidence from hundreds of universities—including the University of Massachusetts Medical School and the University of Oxford in the United Kingdom—strongly suggests that mindfulness builds inner strength, so that stress and anxiety has less impact on happiness and well-being.
More Rational Thinking - Research from INSEAD Business School found that doing just 15 minutes of mindful meditation can lead to more rational business decisions.
Better Leadership - Studies show that leaders who practice mindfulness on the job result in happier employees and increased employee morale.
Enhanced Teamwork – Those who practice mindfulness often show more empathy, which can lead to a more cohesive team. Several studies have found that a person's ability to be mindful can affect relationship satisfaction, and the skill in communicating one's emotions to a partner.
How do you introduce mindfulness to an organization?
While you may be convinced of the value of introducing a mindfulness practice to your organization, you may not be sure how to convince leadership of its importance. Not to worry! We’ve created a presentation so that you can approach decision-makers with confidence. There’s no obligation. This is a free download.
(Here’s where we can rework the stuff below as a downloadable presentation)
We hope the following proven tips will make your efforts to share mindfulness with others more effective and impactful, so that more people can live and work from a place of deeper presence and less stress.