Today’s topic is meditation. How many of you meditate, and how often do you meditate? That is my big question for today.
For those who aren’t meditators, hopefully, today we’re going to discuss why it is important and why you should get started. If you are a regular meditator, you might want to share this with someone who needs to pick up the habit.
So, what are the benefits of meditation? First, there is a lot of different ways to meditate. There’s moving meditation, silent meditation, breathing meditation, meditation with mantras, and so many other kinds of meditation.
Meditation is a practice of training that cultivates healthy positive mental and mind states. One benefit of meditation is therefore mindfulness. And mindfulness is maintaining a non-judgmental moment by moment awareness of our thoughts, feelings, bodily sensations, and the surrounding environment.
In your health, meditation helps to prevent depression, improves your lifestyle and your sleep in general. It improves your wellbeing, reduces stress and improves your resilience. It also improves your cognitive skills, improves your attention, focus and memory. It provides a way for you to regulate your emotions. It helps with interpersonal relationships, communication, and assertiveness.
Regarding your leadership skills, meditation helps with decision making and perspective. In team development, it helps with the awareness of the needs of others.
Meditation also increases grey matter density, which increases connectivity and synaptic density in the brain. It also increases cortical fitness, which helps with increased connectivity and synaptic density.
Meditation increases fractional anisotropy and hippocampal volume and reduces activity in the medulla (which is the emotional stimuli).
What is amazing is that there have been more than 120 institutional researches done on meditation that proves it helps with anxiety, depression, ADD (attention deficit disorder) and ADHD (attention deficit-hyperactivity disorder), pain, tinnitus, traumatic brain injury, age-related cognitive decline and it also supports hospital workers to perform even better.
I just had a group of researchers do some research for me, and pull up specifics on how meditation helps employees in the workplace because this is something that we teach at different companies. We just did training for our dentist up in Delray Beach in Florida. Part of the training was on meditation and about why they should have these amazing devices called Muse (it is a headband), why they should have these in the workplace and why employees should have the ability to go do a quick 10-minute meditation each day to get back to their best self.
And so here is some of the research that was pulled recently, just so you can hear it. In recent research, they surveyed 30,635 patients who had undergone meditation practice and they found that the meditation was significantly predictive of work engagement, subjective to job performance and had improved job satisfaction. People are better engaged, their performance goes up, and their satisfaction with their work also goes up.
There was a 12-week pilot study that involved 239 employees of an American insurance company in which 96 participants were randomly assigned to a mindfulness group, 90 to the yoga meditation group and 53 were the control group to reveal the impact of meditation on employee performance.
The mindfulness group went through 14 hours of training in stress management over 12 weeks and 2 hours of intense training in the tenth week together and 5-15 minutes of daily home practice.
Then 45 participants in the yoga-based meditation group received a handout only while the other half received a handout and a video digital disc training, so they were watching what they were required to learn from the handout.
A baseline measurement was taken within two weeks of the final class, and what they found was that their improved physical health increased workplace productivity and lowered workplace or occupational risks.
Another study published in 2016 showed that meditation helped to resolve workplace conflicts if there were many of those going on. Mindfulness helps to equip employees with better conflict resolution skills and improve their interpersonal skills that make resolving issues easier for employees and managers alike.
According to Fortune, the meditation and mindfulness industry was worth about $1 billion in 2015, and it is growing. About 25 percent of all employers currently offer mindfulness training. I think this is way too low; if you own a company, you need to get this activated in your company.
A new comprehensive analysis of mindfulness research co-directed by a management scientist at Case Western Reserve University suggested that injecting a corporate culture of mindfulness not only improves focus but also the ability to manage stress and enabling employees to work well together.
Mindfulness meditation, in particular, has captured the attention of U.S. business leaders, Congressmen, military commanders, and professional sports teams. The growing list of companies that have introduced this into the company (Google, Apple, Facebook, LinkedIn, Intel, etc.) shows how valuable mindfulness is at enhancing employee performance.
According to a 2016 review by Carnegie Mellon University based on some of the most reliable studies, meditation can help with depression, pain management, and substance abuse outcomes as well.
And so, the benefits of meditation are so many and it helps a ton with employee performance, engagement and job satisfaction, which causes good employees to stay around longer and love what they do.
One thing that I therefore highly recommend if you are someone who believes in meditation yourself and you want to help to spread this in your company, reach out to us. We will be happy to come and do a presentation or talk to your team about meditation and why it is important, and also other factors of high performance.
Secondly, there is a device called “The Muse” that you can buy for your team at your company. If you go to the website highperformancemuse.com, it will take you to the website of a really cool device you can get for your team at the office where they slap the little headband on, and what happens is when they meditate, it tracks how well they are meditating. It brings up this really cool screen that gives you feedback of how well you are doing. The screen shows you a graph of your brainwaves while you are meditating. The spikes are when you have thoughts in your brain and the low portions are when there are no thoughts running through your mind while you meditate. At the end, the device gives you a score and it keeps track of how well you did every day and it gives you challenges to do.
The fun part is if you got your whole office doing this, you can have everyone practice and then you do a challenge. For example, a 30-day challenge in which the person with the highest score gets the prize. And every day, everyone has to do at least 5-10 minutes of meditation.
What is amazing is that you will start to see incredible benefits mentally, physically and emotionally in your team. They will be happier, more engaged, more productive and it is all by getting those little headbands in your office and then having people stop and go use it 5-10 minutes each day. It is very simple. And it is a great device.
That’s today’s little conversation. I am going to watch a movie with my wife right about now. Hopefully, this discussion has been helpful. Hopefully if you are an active meditator you already do this stuff. If you are not, I highly recommend you go to highperformancemuse.com, grab one of those devices and start using it. It is a great way to begin.
Another app that you can use that is really useful is Headspace. You can download the first ten things for free, and you can learn the basics of meditation so that you can get started. Then highperformancemuse.com will give you a discount to get the muse headband which is a medical-grade EEG band that gives you neural feedback on how you are meditating, and it helps you to train better so that you can meditate even more efficiently over time.
It gives lightning bolts and thunderstorms if you have a lot of thoughts inside your head and it gives you little birds chirping when you are doing really well and have a totally clear mind. So have fun with that, go to highperformance.muse.com, check it out and reach out to me if you want our team to do a presentation for your team at the office on high performance, including the benefits of meditation and why they should get started on this and how I can help your company to see more engagement, better performance, and improved job satisfaction among your employees. So, have some fun, kick some butt and I will see you guys tomorrow for day 98 of our 100-day personal performance and business growth challenge!
To Your Success,