Practicing Presence Will Drastically Increase Your Productivity Levels
Just five minutes of mindfulness a day can make you a happier worker.
It’s no secret that in the modern day corporate world, productivity is glorified. The time a person spends getting work done is valued more than the time spent being present that day.
If you’re like me, as soon as you wake up, your brain is flooded. Mental to-do lists filled with as many tasks as possible, phone scrolling — the whole rushed morning routine.
Who taught us that our productivity is more important than our peace?
We don’t really have a choice — in a capitalist society, productivity is a commodity. But we can decide how much we’ll let it impact our mental health.
“Stop measuring days by degree of productivity and start experiencing them by degree of presence.” — Alan Watts
Make it a habit
Take only a few minutes each morning to be in the present moment. Even just five breaths, setting the intention for the day and clearing your energy, will make a difference. See how the quality of your day changes. You won’t waste time, and you’ll be even more productive than you were before.
Those few minutes of mindfulness are like increasing the saturation of your inner world.
Come into your senses
Being present means embodying the understanding that all you have is the current moment. And even that, you’ll never have complete control over. Worrying is the illusion of control. It can be tough to get out of that mental loop.
So, how can you remind yourself to snap out of it?
Regularly remind yourself to tune into your senses. Tactile sensations stimulate the nervous system. Becoming aware of your body reminds mind of what’s around you.
No matter where you are, you can always find a connection to your body. Some of my favorite approaches are:
Movement — Follow your body in whatever way it wants to move. Dance, yoga, and shamanic shaking are all great ways to move energy and get grounded.
Touch — Self massage, petting an animal, massaging someone else, creating art.
Sound — Music, sound baths, singing, even talking out loud to yourself (this always gets me out of my head).
Mindful workers are more productive
I often make the mistake of skipping my mindfulness practice in the morning. It can be hard to slow yourself down when there’s only so much time in a day.
“You should sit in meditation for twenty minutes everyday — unless you’re too busy; then you should sit for an hour.”
― Dr. Sukhraj Dhillon
A busy brain is constantly tiring itself out, and it may be highly productive, but the quality of work isn’t as high as it could be. The mind requires rest just as much as it requires stimulation.
If a brain that’s always stimulated isn’t also resting, it will burn out. Motivation and wellbeing are sustained by taking moments of rest and clarity.
Studies have shown that workers who practice mindfulness are more satisfied with their jobs, are better at managing stress and maintaining work-life balance, and even have better health outcomes.
Once you really start to feel the positive effects of mindfulness, you won’t want to operate in any other way. Starting your day without savoring the present moment will start to feel foreign. Checking your phone as soon as you wake up will seem unappealing. You’ll stop resisting devoting time to mindfulness, and you’ll start looking forward to relaxing and recharging.