Did you know 22% of companies now offer mindfulness training? Corporate warriors like Apple, Google, and Aetna have recognized the importance of mindfulness in the workplace and have dedicated entire programs to making sure their employees are staying stress-free and focusing on the present moment. If your company doesn’t have a plan in place for promoting mindfulness, now is the perfect time to start.
The benefits of making mindfulness an integral part of your company’s culture are endless. In addition to reducing stress and increasing productivity, a mindfulness program does worlds for sending a positive message to employees and ultimately, in attracting and retaining talent.
Here are three ways to promote a mindful office for your employees.
1. Offer on-site yoga and wellness classes.
We already know giving your employees a brief break from their daily 9-5 can help improve their overall being (Harvard Business Review reports it can even help spark emotional intelligence!), and during the course of a lunch break, employers can offer their employees an entire yoga class. Chasing Nirvana Yoga, for instance, offers on-site yoga and wellness classes that cater to each company to meet its individual needs. Even a lunch-and-learn with a wellness expert can promote mindfulness in eating and nutrition. Try carving out an hour once or twice a week and encourage your employees to take advantage of a mindful activity.
2. Designate no-email hours, if appropriate for your industry.
The average person checks their email 15 times a day on different devices. Now that’s a mindfulness disrupter! If you’re not in a time-sensitive industry like a news room, try out a company-wide no-email hour (or half hour if you’re hesitant to be offline that long). Not only will this give people the chance to focus on the present moment, it will minimize distractions so employees can get a project done in one sitting without interruptions.
3. Encourage employees to give up long hours.
Is your office open from 9-5? Unless it is a special circumstance, give your employees the verbal go-ahead to pack up and head home right at 5 p.m.! Many employees don’t realize they’re working late hours until the room goes dark, and some may even put in extra time because they don’t want to be the first to leave. Work-life balance is essential for promoting mindfulness, and by letting your employees know you respect their personal life, you’ll reduce stress, increase loyalty, and give employees a chance to wind down for the evening peacefully. If your employees have difficulty getting their work done by 5 on a normal basis, sit down and help them prioritize. You may be able to take something off their plate!
It’s clear that mindfulness in the workplace is here to stay. By promoting a mindful office for your employees, you’re creating a healthy environment that encourages productivity and happiness. What steps are you taking to make mindfulness a priority in your day to day?