Regardless of which leadership position is held, most professionals and board executives at all levels (leaders, executives and managers) have a filled agenda.
Everyone is short on time. Time is a commodity that is constant and irreversible: there are twenty-four hours in a day, seven days in a week. And the working week is usually five days. Nothing can substitute time. And the worst thing is that once time is wasted, it can never be regained.
For periods in your life you have worked weekdays and weekends, often evenings. You might also have travelled long distances for business, putting yourself and your body under a huge amount of stress and unsustainable pressure in order to get the results that you wanted. Work performance, of course, is important. Achievements and eagerness for future results could mean that personal wellbeing is lagging because of the results.
A constant sense of worry, having to perform better, and focus on problems more than solutions creates an environment where pressure reigns.
With work playing such an important part in life, it is important to notice how personal leadership and management inefficiency impact employees and teams. Stress has become a natural result of pressurized work environments. Our bodies are not built to be in a state of constant alert, constant thinking associated with goals and deadlines, and constant pressure. Leaders are expected to give 110 percent to do a good job.
Mental and physical health are important.
It is common knowledge that a state of high alert, in time, produces a long-term negative effect on health and wellbeing: mentally and physically. Lack of physical exercise and a sedentary lifestyle associated with poor time management skills bring us to a series of ailments including anxiety, cardiovascular disease, migraines, breast cancer, colon cancer, depression, or diabetes, which most informed people know very well, either from personal experience or having seen co-workers, friends, or acquaintances battle with them.
Stress is caused by lack of focus and poor time management skills and is the cause of many ailments, as well as hampering the achievement of sustainable financial results.
Too often performance and results are achieved putting the mind under a lot of effort. While effort is necessary, technique is equally important. And if you are a sprinter, or running a marathon the effort has to be managed differently. In business, or in life, the principles of performance are similar to sport.
Yoga helps to boost performance.
Mindfulness techniques are extremely useful to improve results, creativity and innovative thinking. Yoga is well known for the positive effects on body strength and flexibility. What are maybe less known and taught are the benefits that this ancient philosophy has on the wellbeing of the mind too. The brain is a muscle and overworking it makes decision making poor and thinking skills slow. A brain needs space to think creatively.
Resilience and success in leadership and management come from the ability to understand the basic rules of how the brain function, learning to accept what can be controlled and what cannot be controlled.
Time is a commodity which lies completely in your hands. Personal organisational skills are extremely important. Learning to manage time mindfully, not only the work schedule is streamlined, but the authentic and personal leadership capacities are developed. Putting mental and physical wellbeing at the centre, it means that the brain is used creatively, proactively and innovatively to deliver solutions.
As a yogi for many years, I have learnt to put wellbeing at the centre of my life. Only that way I have been able to perform at my best in work and personal environments and achieve the best results. After working for over twenty years in executive roles and having yoga been so key in my achievements, I now teach leaders and managers to do the same: performing better focusing on wellbeing, both personal and organisational.
Yoga and mindfulness are a way of life which helps prioritise, put decisions into perspective and organise both business and life. Learning to manage your personal mind is in fact the first step to manage other people’s minds.
Mindful time management – a yogic approach to business and leadership organisation
Becoming an inspiring leader, an effective manager, is about understanding basic organisational principles which are at the basis of life and business. Organising time is organising a good working mind. And a good working mind is the vehicle to leadership when in charge of people, who each have their own minds.
Strategies, deadlines, priorities, and goals are part of everyday living, and are the norm when working on tight schedules to deliver results.
Focus, time, better solutions, good ideas, more satisfaction are a consequence of being mindful about your time and learn to behave like a yogi in business. These benefits of a mindful and yogic approach are immediately perceived in work performance and in an increase of leadership abilities. As you learn to establish calmer and coherent mental states, your focus improves, your presence and communication skills directly benefit from that. Intuition, creative thinking, presence, powerful communication are all leadership abilities as well as natural skills which can be nurtured with gentle practices and self-discipline.