Through our authentic leadership programming at bci, we define mindfulness as the practice of present awareness of the mind, body, and emotions in a non-judgmental way, and the desire and ability to alter these states.
Leading neuroscience research points to the profoundly positive benefits of mindfulness, including as a personal growth tool that can be leveraged for professional development. We have known for years that mindfulness reduces stress and improves health, but we can also use it as a tool to manage our thoughts, feelings, and decisions, and enhance our leadership abilities.
We’re also increasingly teaching mindfulness as a highly effective tool for addressing inclusion issues head-on (for example, in interrupting unconscious bias and addressing internalized bias) as part of leadership development.
Ritu recently addressed the Federation of Asian Canadian Lawyers (FACL) in Toronto, Ontario, to share mindfulness strategies for leadership development. Here are Ritu’s top 5 Practical Mindfulness Strategies:
- Change Your Breath: Powerful, effective, convenient and free, managing your breath is the easiest way to tune in to and alter your present state
- Engage in Body Awareness: Engage in the practice of observing your current physical state to help address stress and judgment of others
- Tune in to Your “Voice”: Non-judgmental observation of self-talk allows you to pause, observe, reframe, and change your thoughts (rewire your brain), including what you say about yourself and others
- Leverage Mantras & Positive Affirmations: Wire your brain to use positive statements and/or visualizations to move you away from stress and “amygdala hijack”
- Meditate: Develop a meditation practice that works for you in order to better manage your decisions, behavior, and interactions with others; even 2 minutes of meditation can have a positive effect on your mind, body, and emotions