These are the advantages of the application of Mindfulness in the organizational and professional environment.
What do internationally recognized companies like Nike, Heineken, Apple, Procter & Gamble, Google, Coca Cola, Starbucks or Deustche Bank have in common? Among other things, they have incorporated Mindfulness-based programs into their way of working with the aim of optimizing their productivity and having a positive impact on the well-being of their workers.
In addition, the most admired universities in the world, such as Harvard, Oxford Yale or Cambridge also offer an interesting repertoire of Mindfulness programs to improve the well-being and performance of their students and thus prepare them for their leap into the world of work.
Why is Mindfulness gaining so many followers in the business world?
A chaotic environment full of distractions
As time passes, it is becoming increasingly clear that companies and organizations in general are operating in a very volatile environment in which uncertainty prevails, not knowing what will happen tomorrow. This constant ambiguity has a significant psychological impact on workers (regardless of their managerial position in the company), since they must always be aware of the latest changes, both in terms of strategic planning and in relation to their processes. productive, both in employees and in managers and leaders.
Thus, the need to become multitask prevails : stop writing a document to attend a phone call, inform the supervisor of an incident, continue writing while paying attention to the instructions of a colleague, etc. This means that if you do not know how to handle the workflow, it accumulates on the table (in the form of columns of documents) and this favors the appearance of stress problems and all that this entails (difficulty concentrating, uncoordination, tiredness, etc.).
As a result, these insane work dynamics lead to not finishing tasks and executing them poorly, with errors.
In this context, there are many scientific investigations that have yielded evidence that the use of Mindfulness programs in organizations significantly helps to better cope with pressure in the workplace, maintain a provision of attention to detail, preserve the ability to be creative and adapt to challenges in real time and quickly, as well as reinforcing cohesion between work teams.
In addition, in this way the formation of conscientious leaders is promoted, capable of drawing attention to the parts of the work that really matter, and prone to face problems while maintaining serenity and not being carried away by arbitrary decisions.
Mindfulness, which can be translated into Spanish as mindfulness, is a process by which we adapt to circumstances to focus our attention on the present moment, without making moral evaluations that lead us to prejudge, and relating to reality while we adopt the position of observers, without letting ourselves be carried away by impulses.
Mindfulness can be enhanced through training programs to become a tool for personal development that allows us to face the problems of life, mitigating the effects of anxiety and stress and favoring increased productivity.
In other words, the habit of using Mindfulness leads us to reduce the frequency of the appearance of certain automatic mental processes based on the emotional imprint left by past experiences that, if not managed, can block us in the present.
For this reason, mindfulness has become ** one of the most used resources in Western countries (despite being based on the traditional meditation of certain regions of Asia) and with more interesting and practical results both at work and in personal life.
Of course, in Spain, the practice of Mindfulness is still a relatively minority and has only been launched in certain companies that highly value the health of workers, or in those that want to adapt to new times by making the work environment a place much more comfortable.
Mindfulness in the company: its advantages
According to a survey carried out by Adecco Training and whose results reflect data from 2016, only 5% of Spanish workers have the habit of practicing Mindfulness, despite its advantages and the positive impact it has on job performance.
Among the most significant advantages reported is the increase in productivity, which is estimated to be 20%. In addition, it is estimated that on average, each worker in a company loses more or less an hour and a half due to distractions, which translates into about eight hours lost per week. Approximately 20% of the working day is wasted.
Thus, those who practice Mindfulness have a much better chance of optimally using all the time dedicated to work, and not losing that 20%. Therefore, despite the fact that at the moment it is a little widespread practice in this country, 8 out of 10 companies that know what Mindfulness is recognize that they have the need to implement training programs in mindfulness.
On the other hand, 80% of the organizations consulted plan to train their workers in Mindfulness in the coming years. It is natural, since among the workers who already practice it, 65% claim to have a greater sense of calm at work. This has also led to a 78% reduction in days off due to anxiety or depression in companies that promote Mindfulness practice initiatives.
One of the answers to the lack of job satisfaction
A report by the consulting firm Accenture shows that the job satisfaction index in Spain has dropped, from 52% in 2013 to 44% in 2014; dissatisfaction is already the majority psychological state among workers. Of course, this factor represents a significant challenge for the management teams of companies, who see the need to configure their way of working in a way in which workers feel comfortable in order to retain talent.
On the other hand, phenomena such as presentism at work promote organizational climates in which lack of motivation, stress and hopelessness are the norm, since the feeling of stagnation and inability to detach from a way of working that erodes mental health appears. This, obviously, does not fit well with the turn that has occurred in recent decades in the company philosophy, according to which the professional field can be considered one more component of working life, with values in line with those that we follow in the private sphere.
It has also been seen that those who are regularly subjected to contexts that generate stress have it very difficult to be creative or be positively predisposed towards teamwork, since in these situations the human brain is full of cortisol (the stress hormone) whose The effects work against the confidence hormone, oxytocin.
In addition, the 2016 report of the European Agency for Safety and Health at Work (EU-OSHA) yielded worrying data: the economic cost that stress generates in the field of companies is 136,000 million euros per year on all because of the sick leave it causes. This amount represents between 2.6 and 3.8% of the Community GDP, which implies that from this perspective, harmful psychological disorders are the second most common occupational health problem on the European continent.
Investing in emotional health pays off
Investing in psychological health from the context of work is in itself a goal to which all large companies aspire, both to generate adequate spaces for professional performance and to be more competitive and retain talent. Studies carried out in various countries on different continents show that occupational health programs lead to a reduction in direct costs associated with healthcare, as well as occupational accidents and job rotation.
All the data invites companies to consider the importance of wellness policies in the organizational environment, and the use of Mindfulness is an excellent way to enhance the psychological well-being of those who are part of the team.
This need has been taken very seriously by psychological assistance organizations such as the Barcelona psychology center PsicoTools, which has been offering Mindfulness training services to companies for some time. Initiatives like this make mental health experts change work dynamics, leaving lasting effects on organizations. After all, the pioneers of the use of Mindfulness at work in Spain have it easy: they only have to count on the point of view of those who have spent years dedicating themselves to it in their psychology office.