We all have professional goals we’re working toward. It’s great to be ambitious, strive to be more productive, etc. But, it’s also all right, advisable even, to want to enjoy your job more. Deep down, finding greater contentment or even joy from our work is something we all hope for. Sure, mindfulness practices like meditation can help you advance your career, but there are deeper benefits as well. Meditation could actually help you enjoy your job more, too. Here are a few things you should know.
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1. Studies show it can be an effective treatment for stress disorders.
Decades ago, Dr. Herbert Benson, professor, cardiologist, and now director emeritus of the Benson-Henry Institute for Mind Body Medicine, studied the effects of meditation on health and well-being. His research showed that meditation can help to treat a wide range of stress disorders from hypertension to high blood pressure, insomnia, and anxiety disorders.
In his most popular book, The Relaxation Response, Dr. Benson shares his research, explains how meditation heals the mind and body, and gives some instructions for how to meditate. Certainly less stress, better sleep, and reduced anxiety could help anyone enjoy the workday a little more thoroughly.
2. You’ll enjoy being able to think more clearly.
These days, researchers believe you don’t have to have extensive training in meditation techniques to reap these rewards; they can be experienced after just a little practice. Research indicates that just four days of meditation can improve one’s ability to sustain attention. Wouldn’t your job be more enjoyable if you were able to recover more quickly and fully from the mental and intellectual toll it takes? Meditation can help you get there.
3. It could help you see things more positively.
Last month, Manish Chopra published an article in McKinsey Quarterly that explored his feelings about how meditation has helped him succeed at work, and enjoy it more. He discussed several benefits that he’s noticed from meditation, and one of the most interesting ideas relates to how it caused him to shift his thinking and reactions toward the positive. Even small or slight changes with something like this can make a big difference in how we get through the day.
“I was aware that my own negativity hadn’t been magically removed from me by meditation,” Chopra wrote, “but I was able to respond in a more neutral manner and not allow myself or others to be consumed by it.”
Our reactions are so important, but they can be hard to control consciously. Meditation helps us look at problems or struggles with an ease and perspective that we might not have found otherwise. This shift could really change the way it feels to go to work every day.
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