Tips for running a tight ship
Running your business effectively requires managing numerous resources, including time, record keeping and client relationships.
What approaches have you adopted to
help you better organize your systems?
Most likely, you have a list of tips
for streamlining procedures, reducing
costs and building relationships. But
there’s something precious that does
not appear on your list: your brain.
Are you as diligent about minding your
thoughts as you are in monitoring your
business or creating a killer keynote?
We make many unconscious choices
daily and, while rote patterns save time,
they also dampen your ability to self-monitor. But there’s a practice that
can help raise your awareness of what
you think, feel and do. It’s called
Here’s a simple start-up form of
Boom: Stop what you’re doing
and consciously take in what’s
going around you and within you.
What do you see, hear, sense or feel
at an emotional level?
Breathe: Note if you’re stressed
or tense. Take a cleansing breath
if you’ve been holding it. Keep yourself
here for a moment.
Be: Attend to your thoughts
with no judgment or criticism.
Thoughts are simply ephemeral notions
flitting through our heads; they don’t
define us. Accept and let them pass
without attachment or berating
yourself. Whatever is, is. Examples:
Hmmm. Jealousy . . . or ah, annoyance.
Begin again: Bring yourself
back into a ready state with a
higher level of awareness and get back
to whatever you were doing.
The reality is that day-to-day
habits (how you think and feel, process
emotions and react to situations or
events) affect you. Negative patterns
wear us down, from self-regard to your
immune system. It helps to remember
that jealousy, judgment, condemnation,
resentment or worry constitute forms
of emotional suffering. Mindfulness
keeps you in the moment, aware and
anchored, helping you make the most of
what you have, mentally and physically.
If you’re wondering if mindfulness is
beneficial, here’s a short list: improved
memory, enhanced cognitive function,
increased emotional control and freedom from self-imposed suffering.
Mindfulness literally changes your
brain, helping you know yourself better
and even love yourself more.
Here are some questions worth
• Are you keenly aware of the
thoughts that dominate your brain?
• In what emotional state do you
spend most of your time?
• Are you a consistent model of your
message on and off the platform?
Daily habits can turn into perma-
nent patterns unless we consistently
self-monitor. Is it time to conduct a
personal audit to ensure that you have
mastered congruency between the self-
perception of your awareness level and
what you actually do every day?
As the late Senator Paul Wellstone
once said, “Let there be no distance
between the words you say and the life
you live.” Mindfulness may be what
you’ve been looking for to narrow the
gap between the person you are now
and the one you strive to be, personally
and professionally. If this interests you,
consider a mindfulness meditation
practice to go deeper.
C. Leslie Charles, CSP,
minding Your mind
and consultant, specializes
in stress reduction through
challenges, elevating the service experience
and unifying teams in times of turbulence
and instability. She is the author of seven
books, including the critically acclaimed
Why is Everyone So Cranky?