Here's how to get through your workday mindfully and prevent work stress

How mindfulness can make a difference

There I lay. On the bench. Lavish but at the same time full of adrenaline. I felt my heart racing like mad and was breathing very fast and shallowly. I can hear you thinking, “What’s that one doing now?

No, this was not an activity. This was Karianne trying to calm down. That just didn’t work out so well. This was the result of-perhaps for years-not listening to myself, going on and on and not setting limits. Because I was constantly feeling agitated, this attempt to “get my rest” arose. The always cheerful, optimistic and helpful Karianne lay off.

Now, some years down the road, this is not likely to happen to me again. After all, I know better than anyone how important and healthy it is to breathe well and live mindfully. So it’s something I do as a life coach regularly in my practice with my clients. I also have some ways for you to live mindfully. It starts with awareness.

Almost everything will work again if you unplug it for a few minutes. Including you.

Anne Lamott

Mindful living is not difficult. No way!

With mindfulness, you live more intensely and consciously. By directing your attention more often, you learn to distance yourself from the spins in your head. You can concentrate better, you relax more easily. The mind becomes calmer.

You learn to make conscious choices instead of reacting automatically. As a result, you catch stress stimuli earlier and better and deal differently with thought patterns that are not helpful. A higher level of awareness develops and you are better able to monitor your boundaries.

You can practice mindfulness while doing the dishes or taking a walk. You really don’t necessarily have to sit still in a lotus position and meditate!


Less stress

The benefits of mindfulness are many: reduced stress, better health, better sleep, increased focus, greater productivity and creativity – just to name a few. And the beauty of mindfulness is that you can practice it anytime, anywhere!

You too can take the following steps to bring more mindfulness and happiness into your daily life:

Create a calm morning routine

Get up earlier and stretch, make the bed, take a shower, get dressed, but quietly and at ease (no rushing or multitasking). How can you create the ideal morning routine? Maybe write your thoughts off (journaling) while sipping a cup of tea on the balcony. Maybe take the dog for a walk around the block and concentrate on the birds singing or the flowers blooming.

What is the perfect way to start the day? Start incorporating those elements into your morning routine that allow your day to begin calm and centered. So what does your ideal morning look like? For example, preparing breakfast or lunch the night before makes the morning less stressful.

Have a mindful lunch break

First, assess your hunger level. On a scale of 1 to 10, where 1 is hungry and 10 is full, how hungry are you? Take a moment to tune into your body and notice the feeling of hunger. Now pick up your food and take a look at it. What color is this food you are going to eat? Can you smell it? Now take a bite. Really enjoy the experience. Notice the texture, the flavors. Notice that your saliva begins to flow. Now start chewing. Take your time and really taste this bite. Finally, swallow and notice the feeling as you swallow. After taking the time to eat mindfully, take a walk and observe your surroundings. Take in the sounds, images and smells.

Arrive atevery appointment 10 minutesearly

Use the extra time to do a mini meditation. Turn off your phone, observe your surroundings, then find a place to sit comfortably, close your eyes and begin to scan your body, noting what you are feeling, any aches and pains or tensions. Take a few deep breaths and relax. By incorporating short mini-meditations throughout your day, you will feel calmer, more focused and relaxed. In addition, by being early you automatically reduce the stress of being just on time or late. It’s good to retreat periodically and recharge. One of my clients sat for a few minutes in the office supply room, surrounded by the paper clips, pens and office supplies. It was the only quiet place she could find! Ok, now don’t all run to the pantry…!

Find your own rhythm

Everyone has their own rhythm. Some people naturally speak faster, walk faster, while others prefer a slower, more deliberate pace. Find a pace that feels right for you and don’t be tempted by those around you. If you are a night owl and really come alive at 2 a.m., discuss this at work, for example, and suggest a later start time.

Avoid distractions

Clean up the clutter, stop the noise and avoid the people who suck your energy or waste your time. It is much easier to concentrate and be mindful in a conducive environment. Express your limit in this regard!

Single-tasking is doing one thing at a time. Multitasking is trying to perform two or more tasks simultaneously or switching back and forth between tasks. No one can actually multitask. In reality, your brain switches madly from one to the other, often losing data in the process. So concentrate on 1 task at a time.

Take a break before going home

That may sound strange, but if you’ve had a busy or stressful or frustrating day, it’s not at all surprising if you take those feelings home with you too right? Instead of bringing stress into your home, what if you could make your home a nurturing, loving, peaceful space? Protect this space by clearing out negative thoughts and feelings before you go in.

Take a few minutes in the car to write down issues that concern you or frustrations. Write in your calendar when you handle them. It may help to call someone and share your frustrations or vent for a few minutes. Then do a body scan, take a few deep breaths and just focus on your breathing for a few minutes until you feel calm and centered. Think about who you want to be for your loved ones or roommates and bring that love inside. A client of mine takes a short walk to clear his head and leave his work stress behind so he can relax and enjoy himself when he gets home.


Of course, you don’t have to try these 6 steps all at once if you find that too much. For example, start with the morning routine!

I give you the power and tools to move forward!

Beacon of Balance can help create customized coaching programs that help you feel more comfortable in your own skin again, handle stress better and live in your own unique way. Feel free to contact us if you would like to spar about options. See you then!

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