As we enter the end of the first quarter, there is a lot of reflection going back to how the beginning of the year started out. Were we mindful in our work, were we present in decisions fully and did we take time to really value the time given and presented?
In technology and as an employee of technology, the world is fast paced, "fire" driven and not always a soothing environment. Because of that, it is important to be more mindful and take a second before each task or decision is made to truly recognize where you are at in a conversation, problem, solution etc.
From an article by ZenHabits, here are three things we can think about:
"Focus On Now
- The past. Reliving things we messed up about. Being embarrassed about something we did. Wishing we could have something back that is gone. Living in memories of good times past. Being angry about things done to us. You get the idea.
- The future. Worrying about things we need to do later. Worrying about what might happen, or a big event coming up. Being anxious that things might go wrong, or that we might mess up. Hoping for something wonderful. Dreaming of great things to come.
- The present. What is happening right now, at this moment. What we are doing now.
It is inevitable that we will think about all three. We cannot stop ourselves from thinking about the past or the future. However, with practice, we can focus on the present more than we already do.
But why should we do that? What’s wrong with focusing on the past or future? Nothing’s wrong with it. It isn’t wrong to think about past or future. However, there’s nothing we can do about things that have already happened, and worrying or agonizing about them doesn’t usually do us much good. I’d suggest analyzing what happened, learning from it, and moving on. It’s much healthier.
We also can’t control the future. It’s impossible. We can do things that will change the future, but they might change the future in ways we cannot anticipate. Or they might not change things at all. And the only thing we can do about the future is do something … now. In the present. So focusing on what we do now is the best way to improve the future. Not thinking about the future. I’m not saying you shouldn’t have goals or shouldn’t plan — but goals change (I know this first-hand, as my goals at the end of 2007 were completely different from what they were at the beginning). Plans change. We must be prepared for that change not by over planning, but by being in the moment and rolling with the punches."
How do to that in an ever changing environment?
Because of our industry it's even more important to think about where you are at in a moment. Think about the past, did you learn anything from a situation like this before? Think about the future, what is to come if we take one action over the other and the present, what are my options and how do I feel like all will be impacted.
The other part of mindfulness is just in being more aware of your surroundings, feelings, body and any "monkey brain" you may have. Taking moments during the day to shift in your seat, stand from your desk or take some deep breaths can help your productivity and ultimately how you react to situations much better.