It’s easy to get caught up in a swirl of thoughts and worries. But what we really need as leaders is continual attention to detail and to the needs of others while still appreciating the big picture.
“Bring your attention to this moment,” Janice Marturano instructed. Buddhists? Old hippies? New Agers? Nope. The room was full of hospital executives and managers in lab coats and scrubs, jeans and sports coats at Long Beach Memorial Medical Center. And the teacher was Marturano, once a top executive at General Mills.
On a cold evening in November, 70 people sat silently in a classroom, eyes closed, focusing on their breath. This was not a self-help retreat, and the participants were not the incense-burning type. They were MBA students at NYU’s Stern School of Business, and the event was part of the School’s new Mindfulness in Business Initiative.
The mind is like a serving plate – you have to clean it up from the previous dish before you serve the next one, otherwise you end up with a strange-tasting mess.
With a wealth of information, training and materials competing for our attention, how do you know where to start when you want to improve your leadership skills? How do you become better at inspiring, motivating, engaging and energizing others?
Finding peace in a stressed-out, digitally dependent culture may just be a matter of thinking differently
What began with a single General Mills employee interested in “mindful leadership” is being showcased on perhaps the world’s biggest political-economic stage: The World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland
Scans show mindfulness may change the way our brains function and help us improve attention, reduce stress hormones and even bounce back faster from negative information.
It’s 8:30 a.m. in one of General Mills’ myriad conference room. But there will be no talk about Cheerios or Betty Crocker cake mixes. ” “We come into this moment with the intention of practicing mindfulness,” Sandy Behnken says.
“Every other Wednesday, I get the opportunity to take prospective students out for lunch and answer any questions they have about life at NYU Stern. Over the course of the meal, we talk about our backgrounds, reasons to go to business school, and our future aspirations.
Our world is changing at the speed of an internet microsecond and it can often feel overwhelming. As leaders, we need to learn to meet this reality without becoming reactive, and without letting our fear of the unknown drive us into behaviours that are fear-based or too reliant on the old ‘playbook’.
The positive power of meditation has made the news once again. Research from Carnegie Mellon University states that practicing mindfulness meditation for 25 minutes per session for three consecutive days can alleviate psychological stress.
A college course that starts with 15 minutes of doing absolutely nothing would seem like a credit filler. And yet for harried students in the throes of the tech age, that silent intro has proven to be the toughest part of “Information and Contemplation”
One convention down, one to go. It was certainly an amazing week in Tampa, and I’m not talking about empty chairs — or empty suits or empty speeches.
Simply put, meditation can make your life better. The practice has a host of health benefits: It can reduce stress, ease inflammation and lower blood pressure. It can also help a person feel more present — a state that leads to productivity, creativity and comfort.
As the deputy general counsel for General Mills, Janice Marturano pushed herself past burnout during the company’s protracted merger with Pillsbury. She was impressed by the power of meditation training.
All too often, we as leaders lose our way. Rather than face into what is most important, we allow ourselves to get distracted by the ’emergency of the day’ while the truly important matters are left unattended.
Not long ago, I watched a colleague sit through a tense meeting. In the middle of the meeting, she took off her glasses and simply sat for a few moments in silence. She didn’t speak a word. Her presence said it all.
The idea of mindfulness training was intriguing. The relentless “all hands on deck” lifestyle I was living, coordinating care for a parent with Alzheimer’s and managing clients, was physically taking a toll.
If you’ve ever felt the frustration of trying to have a conversation with someone who is plugged into their PDA, otherwise focused or just completely unavailable, you realize how important effective communication is.
I had never heard of mindfulness, but the idea of a wellness retreat with my colleagues was intriguing. The relentless “all hands on deck” lifestyle I was living, coordinating care for a parent with Alzheimer’s and managing clients through the Great Recession, was physically taking a toll.
Janice Marturano did not consider herself a “New Agey type”. During a particular stressful period as a member of General Mills legal team, she attended a retreat conducted by meditation pioneer, Jon Kabat-Zinn.
The phone is ringing, our inbox is full, and stressful events keep piling up. Your body’s kicked into its mode of choosing fight, flight or freeze, you need a solution NOW, not in two weeks. So what can you do?
CFOs make all kinds of investments, but how about investing in more down time for employees? Planned and mindful slacking off may help optimize talent performance.
The future, by its nature, is uncertain. But it seems even more tenuous than usual these days, as the security of employment, investments, retirement—indeed, the very weather—looks more unpredictable.
Chip Roe was among about two dozen advisors who had agreed to trade their busy schedules for a four-day session of yoga and meditation. For professionals whose business was structured around talking with clients, staff and prospects, it was … unusual.
We’re often preoccupied with what’s next (rather than what’s now) in order to stay ahead of our demanding schedules. But still, we end up triaging situations in both life realms as they crop up—struggling to be as effective as we can.
Mindfulness is the practice of purposely focusing your attention on the present moment—and accepting it without judgment. Mindfulness is now being examined scientifically and has been found to be a key element in happiness.