Using meditation for success and abundance
Meditation holds the keys to the toolbox every entrepreneur, small business owner, and anyone who wants to excel at a demanding job needs. From improved focus, better leadership skills, superior decision-making, and clear-headed strategy – read on to find out how meditation can set you up for business success.
The life of an entrepreneur can often feel like a wild rollercoaster ride. Sometimes you’re up, sometimes you’re down, and finding a moment to catch your breath in between may feel like the biggest challenge of all. Stack on top of the challenges of managing a team, raising funds, ensuring cash flow, marketing, R&D, and salaries, and you’ve got yourself a recipe for a burnout disaster. So how can you set yourself up for business success against all odds?
One way to do so is by incorporating mindfulness and meditation into your every day. Don’t just take it from us; these five successful business leaders, including billionaire Ray Dalio and LinkedIn CEO Jay Weiner, swear by it. And perhaps the most famous advocate for mindfulness was Steve Jobs, whose philosophy on the business benefits of meditation was later confirmed by neuroscientists when brain scans showed that mindfulness meditation makes you a more effective and creative manager.
What exactly is meditation?
Meditation is an extended practice by which you can gain awareness and perspective by being idle. It is a training process that can be practiced by sitting down with your eyes closed, laying on your back, or listening to a guiding voice that helps you navigate the practice. The purpose of meditation is to help you turn off your thoughts and feelings, be in the present moment, and ultimately gain perspective and better understand your mind. Mindfulness, a type of meditation, can be as simple as paying attention to how the soap bubbles or how the texture of the sponge feels against your fingers when you wash the dishes. In these moments of letting go, creativity sparks, which is why it is crucial for entrepreneurs, small business owners, and ambitious employees to try it.
Here are 5 (of many) reasons every business person should practice meditation for success and abundance:
1. Better focus & concentration
Researches at Columbia University claim that meditating can change the structure and function of the brain through relaxation and can increase focus and learning concentration. When you practice meditation, you practice focusing your attention on a single task (the present), removing all distractions – wiping the interfering thoughts of ‘what if’s that may infiltrate into your meditation. This practice of removing these distractions is an essential tool for focusing at work as well, a task that is becoming increasingly difficult as never-ending pings and notifications cascade on our screens.
2. Increased Creativity
Harvard research shows that just 10 minutes of meditation a day can boost creativity. In this study, a group of students was given the task of coming up with business ideas. The students were divided into three groups: one was provided audio-guided meditation, the other “fake” meditations, and the other started brainstorming immediately. The results? The meditators came up with a 22% wider range of ideas.
3. Enhanced leadership skills
When you take care of yourself, you take care of others. If you come to work feeling energized and grounded, this will reflect on the rest of your team. Contrastingly, if you arrive at the office in an apparent state of nearing burnout, this could negatively affect your employees.
Furthermore, a recent study showed that workplace mindfulness training actually increases your leadership capacities of relating to others and adapting to change. In other words, when you practice mindfulness, you develop empathy and can be more attuned to your employees and their needs. The study also exhibited an impact on three self-leadership capacities: mindful task management, self-care, and self-reflection.
4. Smarter decision-making
Being an entrepreneur often means being in high-stress environments and having to think on your feet. Decisions need to be made quickly and under immense pressure, which may leave room for error. On the other hand, making a moment to meditate and take a deep breath can help mitigate stress and regulate emotions before making a rash decision. An INSEAD and The Wharton School study showed that just one 15-minute focused-breathing meditation may help people make smarter choices.
5. New Perspectives
The basics of mindfulness and meditation techniques are about seeing things at a distance and being objective. Mindfulness gives you the space to analyze situations and remove your emotions or ego so that you can make more clearheaded decisions that benefit your business.
Putting it into practice.
Daily meditation for success is ideal, but we all have to start somewhere. Meditation is a patient process that is uniquely yours to pick up or put down whenever you please. As an entrepreneur, including a meditation practice, whether through an app like Headspace, Calm, or Reflect for even a minute a day, can show significant results in how you approach your work and life and how those end up working for you.