The effects of meditation on my leadership
I have always been intrigued by meditation and mindfulness, but have never really taken the step to really try these concepts. It has always felt to difficult, complicated and it seems as only people with extreme dedication, actually manage to do it. I also have a difficulty to identify myself with the stereotype of fuzzy new age kind of people that talks and promotes meditation and mindfulness.
Headspace gave me a new perspective
In 2013 I read an article about Andy Puddicombe that at the age of 22 left England to follow his interest in meditation. This took him all over the world, culminating with full ordination at a Tibetan Monastery in the Himalayas. Ten years later, Andy returned to the UK with the singular wish to demystify meditation, to make it accessible, relevant and beneficial to as many people as possible. The story made me intrigued and I decided to try Andy’s concept, Headspace. To learn more check out Andy’s Ted talk below with more than three million views.
What I really liked about Andy’s concept is that it is straightforward. There is no cosmos, strange images or fuzzy ideas. Instead it is clear steps and practices that makes sense and are easy to follow. To learn more about Headspace check out the video below.
Science and meditation
According to research, meditation can change your brain and help you with stress, worry, addiction, focus, immune system, sleep, depression and most important of all wellbeing. To learn more about the benefits of meditation check out www.headspace.com/science
My Headspace journey
During 2012 and 2013 I experienced a great loss. I was not depressed but there were so many feelings inside me, which were difficult to handle. I had an inner stress and my brain never stopped thinking. I was overwhelmed with difficult emotions. After learning about Headspace I tried out the free app where I tested to do 10 min of meditation for 10 days. I experienced an immediate change. I became much calmer, happier and it felt like I had more control. I learned that I did not have to focus on everything I felt and thought about. I learned that it was ok to let the feelings go and let them pass. When the 10 days where finished I decided to start a subscription that consist of different training program series of meditation. I have continued since then to follow the program and learn more from Andy.
The effects of meditation on my leadership
As leaders we are expected to encourage, solve issues, listen, manage emotions, be inspirational, create trust etc. It is really hard work to be a great leader and even more hard work to be an amazing leader. My aspiration in life is to be an amazing leader but I know that the path is long and demands insight, experience and a lot of knowledge. When I started to meditate I experienced the following benefits to my leadership:
- Higher awareness – Using the Headspace program I feel more aware. It is as I suddenly can tap into everything going on with a much clearer perspective. I understand and I am more aware of what is going on.
- Self-awareness – I have started to observe my own behaviors and now I get weekly epiphanies about myself. I believe that as a leader I should show the way and be an inspiration. I can now clearer see my own strengths and weaknesses and I use this knowledge to improve and be a better leader.
- Stress – I can be really stressed and tired. After my meditation it is all gone and I feel very calm, relaxed and I feel that I have control. It is amazing to experience how fast it works.
- Tap into intuition – Intuition is the ability to acquire knowledge without inference or the use of reason. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Intuition_(psychology) Meditation has really helped me to catch the moments of intuitionally based insights. For me these seem to come more often in moments when my mind is calmer.
- Greater clarity and focus – I feel that the meditation have given me the ability to better focus. I feel I can better control all my thought and what is going on.
- Better listener – With higher awareness, self-awareness, less stress and better clarity and focus I feel that I can listen and better understand colleagues. I am tapping into what they are saying and at the same time I am aware of my own reactions and feelings.
- Better sleep – Because of stress and worries I sometimes had issues falling asleep which had the effect that I was really tired and sometimes non productive the next day. Meditation has helped me to relax and fall asleep when I really need.
Visit www.getsomeheadspace.com to learn more and download the free Headspace app that you can see on the image to the right.
Image credit: www.headspace.com
Also published on Medium.