The Meditation Equation: Work – Stress = Bigger Profit Margin.
I love the theme of this section, not only because I’m a huge Monty Python fan, but because I firmly believe in the underlying advice behind those famous words.
You see, most of the world’s greatest success stories came about when someone noticed that things aren’t great and then had the cojones to try something completely different.
Let’s take your business for example. Whatever you do, and wherever you work—whether it be at an Argument Clinic or the Ministry of Silly Walks—chances are that you and your employees are stressed, unsatisfied, rather unproductive, unfocused and generally ill in some form or another… though hopefully, you’re all feeling better than this parrot.
What you need to understand is that your business is only as strong as your employees. The World Health Organisation estimates that stress costs American Businesses up to $300 Billion a year. So whether you’re a one-man/woman band, or ten thousand soldiers strong — if your employees are stressed, then the company under-performs because of it.
Sure, it’s commonplace for work to be a major problem in peoples’ lives but there is a way to turn all of that around. You should try something completely different with your approach, perception and functioning at work, even if that ‘something’ has been around for thousands of years.
Of course, we’re talking about meditation, the new darling of the corporate world. Now, don’t immediately put your nose up at it. While all the important aspects remain — this isn’t the hippy-dippy, crystal-crazed, flowy-clothing, incensed-by-incense kind of meditation. I’m talking about the new, workplace-empowerment kind of meditation. The one that has both the employee’s best interests at heart and the company’s bottom line in mind.
This is a practice that has taken many of the world’s biggest, most innovative and most productive companies by (a very calm) storm.
Brands like Apple, 3M, Nike, Deutsche Bank and, most notably, Google are all massive proponents of mediation in the workplace.
Why? Because of how incredibly beneficial it is to the working world.
Scientific evidence shows that if you meditate for just 20 minutes a day at work, instead of tweaking your fantasy team or having that fourth coffee break, then you’ll be:
- smarter (by literally growing the grey matter in your brain)
- more creative
- more productive
- more focused
- more empathetic and compassionate
- more solution-focused
- more resilient
- more emotionally intelligent
- less prone to absenteeism
- a better communicator
- better at creating and maintaining relationships
Basically, you’ll be a better human because meditation isn’t just the next game-changer. It’s a life-changer.
It’s obvious that if your employees improve, then your company improves in a myriad of ways, both measurable and immeasurable. Ironically, you may be forced into meditation just to maintain your competitive edge.
I like the way that the cynically-minded Dan Harris, the author of ‘10% Happier’, explains it in this excellent video.
“I believe meditation will be the next big public health revolution… it will join the pantheon of no-brainers like exercise, brushing your teeth and taking the medication that your doctor prescribed to you.”
He goes on to say, “Our happiness doesn’t depend on external factors, happiness is a self-generated skill; something you can train just like you can train your body at the gym.”
And if that isn’t the perfect metaphor, I don’t know what is.
Look, try it out for 10 days. And even if it fails (which it won’t), you haven’t lost anything. You’ve just had a happy, calm, productive couple of days, and you can return to that stressful existence that, for some reason, you crave so much.