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Quiet time? Should employees be encouraged to meditate?


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Wellbeing in the workplace has become an important value for many organisations over the past decade. Companies looking to improve productivity, boost mental wellbeing and reduce workplace stress have turned to mindfulness as a wellbeing strategy.

One way to practice mindfulness is through meditation. Of course, meditation isn’t a new activity – it’s a practice that has been used for centuries, promoting calmness, balance and overall health. So, should you be encouraging your employees to meditate?

As an employer, it is important to have stress management and wellbeing initiatives in place to help your staff better manage their stress.

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The problems with workplace stress

Workplace stress is likely to affect most employees at some point in their lives. Physical, emotional and behavioural problems which can impact your health, wellbeing, and relationships. For example, stress can induce anxiety, cause headaches and even contribute to potentially life-threatening problems such as high blood pressure.

When employees are stressed, this creates multiple problems in the workplace, including reduced productivity, increased absenteeism, high employee turnover, and conflict. Therefore, as an employer, it is important to have stress management and wellbeing initiatives in place to help your staff better manage their stress.

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How can meditation help?

However, with meditation, employees can quickly reduce stress and tension in the workplace. Meditation can be a great way to tackle and prevent burnout amongst employees, as it causes the body to produce fewer stress hormones and allow the body to boost its immune system.

Taking a 10-minute meditation break can help employees to clear their minds, feel more relaxed and feel in a better position to continue with their work. The benefits of meditation don’t just stop there either. Meditating can help employees to feel less anxious, increase their productivity and creativity as well as decrease distraction.

How can it be implemented?

There are many ways that you can implement meditation within your organisation. For example, group meditation sessions could be offered. To do this, you need to provide a dedicated space for your employees to practice their mindfulness, such as a quiet room away from the busy office. Dedicating space and time for meditation will show your employees you are committed to improving wellbeing as well as make it easier for them to participate.

Another way to implement meditation in the workplace is through the use of wellbeing apps or programs. With this, employees will be able to practise meditation when they need to, for example, if they feel stressed when producing a report, and enable them to take the time out when they need to.

Wellbeing apps and programs also provide employees with guidance on how to meditate. For those who are new to meditation, having this support available will make them more likely to participate. It will also allow individual employees to personalise their meditation depending on what stressors they are experiencing.

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How to encourage mediation in the workplace

With wellbeing programs, you can use incentives to reward employees for participating in meditation activities. This is a great way to get staff involved with wellbeing as well as encourage people to try out meditation and use it to manage their stress.

For example, Lifeworks offer corporate perks with their employee assistance program. Employees can receive financial rewards when using their program, such as discounts, cashback offers, and vouchers.

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