7 Days: B&W No People No Explanation 


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16 Reasons Meditation is Good For You


Benefits of Meditation: a Short List

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Meditation…

  1. reduces stress
  2. improves focus and concentration
  3. supports healthy living through greater awareness of body and mind
  4. reduces reactivity
  5. increases capacity for flexibility and adaptability
  6. reduces rigidity of thinking
  7. increases creativity across the board
  8. reduces relationship stress by increasing empathy and compassion
  9. increases capacity for emotional regulation
  10. reduces anxiety, depression
  11. increases happiness
  12. makes it easier to deal with inevitable difficulties (acceptance)
  13. slows aging – maintaining great mental sharpness and reducing worry lines
  14. increases heart lung (cardiovascular health) as we reduce stress
  15. supports a strong immune system
  16. improves overall well-being

Not bad for sitting still and attending to the breath! And, unlike many medications, there’s no unpleasant side effects.

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Meditation: If Anderson Cooper Can Do It, So Can We


First of all, here’s the amazing 60 Minutes episode which Anderson Cooper says, changed his life!

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What can mindfulness do for you?

Here is a short list:

  • Mindfulness meditation is a bit like going to the gym for your heart and mind
  • Lets us drop into our lives more peacefully
  • Live longer by being fully present more of them time (instead of living always in the past or future)
  • Opens and clears your heart
  • Generates compassion
  • Steadies the mind
  • Increases focus and reduce distractibility
  • Increases creative thinking/problem solving capacity
  • Helps us deal with conflict more easily
  • Face difficulties and “negative” emotions with more grace
  • Reduce stress
  • Increase health with improved immunity, lowering blood pressure
  • Alleviate anxiety, depression, and addiction problems

Interested in how mindfulness might help you or your organization?

Please reach out to us. Calm Chicago offers talks, workshops and ongoing teaching in mindfulness.

Carpe diem. Carpe pacem.

Hillary

SailingPsychologist

Startling Workplace Stress Data


80% is a Very High Number

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80% of workers feel stress on the job, nearly half say they need help in learning how to manage stress and 42% say their coworkers need such help; (stress.org)

Good News!

This is fixable. We can help.

Contact us for a free informational interview to learn more.

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Shawn Achor on Positive Psychology and Work


I just have to share this great TED Talk by psychologist, Shawn Achor.

He says everything, (very fast), that I have read, learned and now believe to be true about the relationship between happiness and business. These ideas are central to the work we do with business, organizations and individuals.

I’d add that what we add to his equation, is mindfulness and focus or attention training, as the bedrock on which happiness can be built. Studies show that mind-wandering, a lack of focus is associated with depression and unhappiness. And of course, those things are not associated with success in business or in our personal lives.

Contact us to learn more about how we can help you, your team, your company, your community.

Mindful Movement Motivation Monday


Mindful Movement Class at Marsh Insurance Brokers and Risk Management. It was very windy but sunny and so wonderful! Thanks so much for inviting us to your offices.

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Mindful movement classes release stress and create a sense of being open to the moment with greater ease. This can lead to more peaceful and productive days at work,

The equation is very simple really. Mindfulness helps us remain in the present moment, intentionally and non-judgmentally. This in turn allows us to be happier, more flexible, accepting of what comes. Happy people have higher IQs, are more creative and energetic.

It’s no mystery that those people are going to be outstanding employees and are going to help your company thrive.

There’s quantifiable, proven science to back this up. The annual losses to American companies each year are staggering; over five billion dollars. But, as Aetna C.E.O., Mark Bertolini found, that can be turned around. In fact, with only about a third of Aetna’s employees taking part in their companies free access to yoga and mediation, the company saved enough to give its lowest paid workers a 33% raise just from the money saved in getting back lost work time, about 62 minutes per week, which regained the company about $3000-$3500 per employee per year. Levels of negative stress and pain went down 19-28 percent. And so, workers have more to be happy about than their raises.

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Want to make these kinds of changes at your company? We can help.

Two Tips for More Mindfulness of Listening at Work


Probably We All Think We’re Great Listeners

In fact though, when we’re supposed to be focused on what someone else is saying, our minds can be very busy with all kinds of thoughts. We may be lost in the past, projecting into the future, worrying about what we’ll say next, concerned about what action we might take next and how that will be perceived, and what about our reputations?

When We Onto All These Worries, We Hear Nothing

Sharon Salzberg, in her book, Real Happiness at Work, says, “In order to improve communication, we must learn to be mindful of what would best achieve the goals of both parties. Listening to understand without agreeing or disagreeing can show you how open you are to someone’s ideas – and how open they can be to yours.

Two Tips for More Mindful Listening

1. As you begin engage with someone in conversation at work, whether one-on-one or in a group, sit and allow your hands to relax and just rest somewhere comfortably. Really focus on the feeling of relaxing the palms of the hands, then the fingers, completely. Then attune your listening to the person speaking. When the hands are relaxed it’s nearly impossible to be tense and closed. AS the body opens, so does the listening heart and mind.

2. If you know you have a meeting or conversation coming up, make a commitment to yourself to listen more than you talk. Allow pauses to arise between verbal exchanges. In those pauses, is great wisdom. Let the words of the other sink in. Give yourself permission to take your time to reflect on your common goals and what you might want to hear in return if you were the person speaking.

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