Clearing some myths and misconceptions on mindfulness for leaders
Before I share with you in the next few posts some of the scientific results on the positive impact of mindfulness on leadership and decision making, let me clear the air on several common misconceptions about mindfulness and its application for leaders. Mindfulness does not mandate that you take up yoga, burn incense, go on ten-day silent retreats, or meditate several times a day. While those are all elements of various mindfulness practices, none are required to increase your own mindfulness levels.
There are many myths and misconceptions about mindfulness, so to clear any confusion let’s be clear:
- Mindfulness is more than just learning to meditate. In fact, meditation is not required to become more mindful and present.
- The purpose of mindfulness is to slow down and observe thoughts without judgment, not to have zero thoughts.
- Mindfulness is not about taking time out to relax, rest, and tune-out the world. Instead, mindfulness helps you become more attuned and aware of the world around you.
- The ultimate goal is not to become mindful all the time, but rather to bring mindfulness into your life on a
- regular basis to reduce stress, control emotions, improve cognitive thinking, and make better decisions.
And in terms of applying mindfulness to leadership, there is also no need for your leadership team to gather together in circles singing Kumbaya.
Rather, as my recent book Better Decisions Better Thinking Better Outcomes: How to go from Mind Full to Mindful Leadership shows, mindfulness is a management technique that enables leaders to make higher quality decisions, enhance cognitive thinking skills, improve employee engagement, increase productivity, and produce more desirable results, while simultaneously improving their own health and reducing their risks for high blood pressure, cardiac incidents, and Alzheimer’s disease.
Those are skills that every leader can improve. And they should be skills on your own personal leadership development goals for 2019.
Our one-day workshop Better Decision Making: Shifting from Mind Full to Mindful Leadership Skills will help you and your colleagues on this journey.
This article is excerpted from my recent book Better Decisions Better Thinking Better Outcomes: How to go from Mind Full to Mindful Leadership, available on Amazon in both paperback ($18.88) and Kindle ($7.88) formats.