Richard has been walking each day; he’s swapped out a daily soda for water, is eating more vegetables and fewer sweets. He’s lost 6 pounds, is less stressed, and is feeling fantastic. But last Thursday, he arrives to work feeling grumpy after a lousy commute. While putting his healthy lunch in the break room fridge, he sees a box of pastries on the table… apple fritters, his favorite. Having practiced the STOP technique as part of his mindfulness meditation routine, he immediately uses it:
Wellness leaders everywhere look for ways to help people make behavior change stick, but sometimes overlook a key barrier: stress. When we’re stressed out, we tend to revert to older, more comfortable habits — even if they make us feel worse in the long run.
That’s where meditation comes in. Anyone can learn this ancient contemplative practice long known to promote well-being. Most important, meditation helps people shift from reacting to observing their own thoughts and feelings — and responding in more thoughtful ways to all kinds of situations. With regular practice, this leads to less stress… plus an enhanced sense of calm and well-being. Adding meditation training to your wellness offerings will equip participants with vital skills for staying on track with healthy behaviors, while improving job performance and fostering a positive culture.
With organizations like Google, the US Marine Corps, and the Seattle Seahawks embracing meditation, it’s gaining ground as a mainstream workplace well-being practice. The benefits of regular meditation are well documented, including:
Types of Meditation
Of the many meditation forms, here are a few popular with workplace wellness programs:
What to Do
You don’t need a huge budget to promote meditation. A few ideas:
Practicing meditation equips workers with additional skills and resources to draw on during times of increased stress — helping them stay on track with health behaviors instead of sliding back into old habits. If your workplace wellness program doesn’t already offer meditation, make a plan now to delight employees with this vital tool.