Personal and professional challenges can easily bring us into a disconnected state. With the growing speed of change and multi-dimensional life demands, the tendency to misalign with ourselves and others can affect our core being.
Stressors can be all over our environment. Lack of trust, power play and office politics are found in all layers of society. It can be detrimental to actualizing our genuine aspirations. In our world, climate change, like unpredictable weather patterns, disrupts our activities and adds stress. Differing views expressed via social media has also divide us and cause strain in our relationships. Indeed, it becomes a challenge to our personal leadership to withstand the pressure, manage the change and stay connected within.
Building our coping skills cannot be addressed by simply focusing on our technical competencies. At this time, we are moving towards self-mastery as the fundamental source for increasing personal capacity.
What is the impact of self mastery? It increases emotional intelligence, particularly our resilience, which is our main leverage to cope with change.
Resilience is defined as the ability to cope with ongoing disruptions, withstand pressure and bounce back easily after a setback. It allows us to adapt easily without adversely affecting our general well-being.
In order to be resilient, nurturing our psychological health is very important. One emerging practice which has made significant gains to mental fitness is mindfulness training.
Mindfulness is defined as a state of active and open attention to the present. When one is mindful, he can observe his thoughts and feelings from a distance and without judgment. A study measuring brain electrical activity show that a short program in mindfulness meditation may significantly change brain and immune function in positive ways. When this skill is developed, it declutters the mind and clarifies one’s priorities in life, whether it be family, health, relationships or wellbeing.
In his book, u201cSearch Inside Yourselfu201d, Chade Meng Tan identifies attention training, building self knowledge and mastery, and creation of useful mental habits as a sequential method to acquire mindful thinking. Being a software engineer for Google, he wanted to help his colleagues who were burned out find the key to happiness by offering it as a free class within the organization. What was developed and tested in Google evolved into one of the most popular mindfulness based emotional intelligence programs that became global in a few years.
What is the result of increased emotional intelligence through mindfulness? It allows you to produce more than you expect of yourself, being able to withstand pressure and manage change while staying connected within. It makes you more resilient and adaptive to ongoing changes in your environment. It becomes your leverage as you roll with the punches and enjoy the successes in your life journey.
Jocelyn Reyes-Pick obtained her BS and MS in Statistics from the University of the Philippines, her MBA in International Business and MSBA in Finance from the University of Southern California (USC) and her Doctorate in Educational Management from the Polytechnic University of the Philippines. After several years serving in government, she moved to California and held positions with KPMG and The Holden Group. She is a former consultant to the USC International Public Policy and Management Masters Degree Program and was a consultant to the Department of Education (Philippines) under Secretary De Jesus.