What does big business have to do with brain-based wellness? You wouldn’t think much. In fact, you’d think the two were polar opposites and in a lot of cases they are, but if you read Steve Jobs’ biography, you’ll find that one of the world’s most successful businessmen practiced mindfulness. Could that be the secret to Jobs’ massive success and how one of the most innovative thinkers of our time broke away from the pack and created his own way of doing things?
In the decades before the 1980s, the concept of business emphasized being part of a team culture, stewardship of the company, partnership with fellow employees and being part of your community at large. In the ’80s with the boom of the stock market and bigger business, the world subscribed to the “greed is good” mantra. The life of excess is what everyone was looking for, more money, more things, more lavishness–work hard and play hard. In management, this wasn’t a life philosophy as much as it was a theory of business that demanded busy executives become self-involved for the good of the planet. Unfortunately, things didn’t really work out that way.
However, Steve Jobs was a little different. He subscribed to the concept of mindfulness in business and in life. Biographer, Walter Isaacson, quotes Jobs in his biography, Steve Jobs:
“If you just sit and observe, you will see how restless your mind is. If you try to calm it, it only makes it worse, but over time it does calm, and when it does, there’s room to hear more subtle things–that’s when your intuition starts to blossom and you start to see things more clearly and be in the present more. Your mind just slows down, and you see a tremendous expanse in the moment. You see so much more than you could see before.”
In the middle of the chaos and greed of the 80s, Jobs practiced mindfulness, focusing on the internal and paying attention to the details. Given his success, maybe he was on to something. Neuroscience agrees. Brain scans have recently proven that mindfulness meditation can make you more creative and a better manager of people.
According to the article, “The Neuroscience of Meditation”, published in the British Journal of Neuroscience Nursing:
It has been shown that mindfulness, as a result of neuroscientific changes caused by its practice, can enhance attention, whereby the anterior cingulate cortex (the region associated with attention) has shown changes in activity and structure as a response to mindfulness meditation. Fronto-limbic networks involved in processes that improve emotion regulation, and reduction in stress, show patterns of engagement through mindfulness meditation practice.
Mindfulness helps you become better able to concentrate for longer periods of time, better handle stress in your job and in life and remain calm when you’re feeling pressure. These are all great habits to carry into the business world. Mindfulness also enhances your ability to see creative solutions to problems, which is helpful in business situations.
More and more employers are looking for creativity in their employees to help solve current problems. When you’re dealing with real world issues on the job, your solutions are usually not going to come from a textbook–but it isn’t easy to stay creative on a daily basis. Practicing mindfulness daily can help you clear your mind of the minutia that can clutter it and help reduce the stress that our jobs can bring–and employers such as Google and Goldman Sachs are following in Steve Jobs’ footsteps and incorporating it into their culture.
One of the best ways to incorporate mindfulness into your daily life is to use the BrainTap Mobile App. With all the daily distractions we face it’s increasingly difficult to sit and quiet your mind for any length of time. With BrainTap, you can experience mindfulness at the touch of a button. It’s meditation and mindfulness done for you.
More creativity, less stress, better mood and enhanced productivity at work, all in the time it takes to drink a cup of coffee? It is possible. What Jobs seemed to know and what neuroscience has confirmed is motivation comes from within and great leaders are the ones that can find creative solutions to today’s problems. It is now easier than ever for you to join them!
To begin your mindful meditation practice today, click HERE and receive a 15-day FREE trial to our BrainTap Mobile App!
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