They say the one constant is change. Yet you may wonder if too much change within an organization is the best thing for it. I know I stopped counting the restructures and reorganizations within one organization I worked in. And I was used to change having spent my earlier career in the agency world where time is marked by winning and losing clients, pitches, and those seemingly constant changes in the client’s direction.

How does one survive let alone thrive in constant change? In my opinion two of the ways include mindfulness and meditation. And before we start, we must all admit constant change is the world right now. With advancements in science and technology, social media and customer-driven engagements, and the ups and downs in markets, no organization can thrive without embracing change.

“You can’t stop the waves, but you can learn to surf.”
Jon Kabat-Zinn

There is a mind and body connection when dealing with stress. I really didn’t pay attention to this until I dealt with chronic headaches. If I was stressed my pain intensified. I learned that while I could not control my pain, I could control my reaction to it.

This applies to change in the workplace. I could not control all the changes that occurred around me but I could certainly control my reaction to it. By understanding the motivations behind the change I could move forward and embrace it. If I didn’t agree with the change itself, I could understand the why and move on. I chose to be mindful of where I spent my energy and that was on moving forward, not looking backwards. I chose to concentrate on the present - the project at hand, the initiative that needed attention and the friendships I developed with my colleagues. I chose not to worry about the past and what could have been, nor worry about what might have been. This is a choice and often times it can be difficult. Meditation also helps.

Many people don’t understand meditation or believe in its benefits. I’ve been meditating for 15 years. There are many techniques to choose from and you can find one that works for you. Essentially you are using breath to relax and focus your mind. Meditation reduces anxiety, helps diminish the mind chatter (negative self-talk) and brings focus. Meditation takes practice though and the mind chatter may never go away, but you can help decrease it. Start with meditating 10 minutes a day and keep at it. It really does help.

Don’t believe me with mindfulness and meditation? See this article that showcases six proven benefits (Cho, Jeena. “Six Scientifically Proven Benefits of Mindfulness and Meditation,” Forbes, 14 July, 2016.

Now, let’s go surfing!



Photo: By Amy Mikel. Sunset at Manly, Australia. June 2007.