Using Mindfulness to Achieve Results
By Judy Irving, MCC
(MMC guest master coach & blogger)
More and more my clients are telling me their mind is like a mosquito
, constantly flitting from one place to another and how this is effecting their productivity. What I am learning in my studies with Dr. David Rock, (author of Your Mind at Work, Coaching With the Brain in Mind and Quiet Leadership) is that mindfulness is one of the most important traits
we can learn and apply. What I mean by mindfulness is being consciously aware of where you are placing your attention;
this aspect of your mental well being is an important aspect of how you make choices which is responsible for and leads directly to the results you achieve.
The brain is a quantum environment and subject to the laws that apply to the subatomic level; one of these laws is this: The questions you ask influence the results you see.”
This is one of the reasons coaching works so well. If I say, “What did your boss tell you in your performance review? The auditory circuits get activated along with the visual memory of the scene and any emotional reaction the client might have had. If I pose my question as “What went well in your performance review?” The client has a much broader series of circuits to choose from. The ones mentioned above, but in addition the overall effects of the interaction, previous performance reviews, conclusions, questions, etc. The client’s attention is held longer, more richly and more positively.
Often we are so emotionally involved with the problem or situation we can’t step back and separate the facts from the emotion. Asking a question that allows you to see the bigger picture, more encompassing of the positives means the quality of the focus is enriched. If you can become that aware observer, as a coach can do, your entire perspective is likely to change
. I continually say to my clients, I understand the problem, now, let’s focus on the solution; or stop dwelling on what’s not right, and let’s focus on the desired result.
This is especially important when it comes to change; if you shine your spotlight on something new that represents the change you wish to make, your brain will make new connections
. It’s a fact, when you focus your attention repeatedly on something, your brain hardwires these circuits…much like driving comes automatically, its because driving has been hardwired.
Being mindful, catching your thoughts, being aware, not multi-tasking (or dividing your attention), being clear to focus on what you want, not what you don’t want will begin to hardwire your brain for success.
Even spending 3 minutes per day in a mindful visualization focusing attention on your business vision, greater health, increased energy, or gaining new customers will begin to bring the desired results. Getting as many senses as possible involved greatly enhances the end result. I’ve noticed with one client…she has begun to say: My intention is this, and my intention is that…and she is getting the results of her intention. When I drew this to her attention, she said, “You’re absolutely right!”
Even my chosen spiritual path, A Course in Miracles says, “You are much too tolerant of mind wandering, thus passively condoning its miscreation.” A question: What has shown up in your life that you don’t want (what have you created in your life that you don’t want)?
We must change our minds before we can change our behavior or our results.
What you do comes from you think. We believe we are responsible for what we do, but not for what we think. This is an error in our thinking.
I challenge you to become more mindful of where your thoughts are focused, where you’re applying your attention and remind you that your thoughts become your reality.
Copyright Judy Irving
Judy works with executives, managers and business leaders to clarify their greatness, their potential, their skills and their strengths. Then together they strategize on how to combine these with job responsibilities and expectations of upper management or stakeholders to transform this greatness into opportunity and results. She combines spiritual principles with practical skills to achieve her process which she describes as transformative coaching.
She is also an author and speaker. Her speaking engagements and coaching clients are international and include such diverse corporations as Coca Cola, FOX, Cox Communications, National Public Radio, Kiewit International, the City of Las Vegas and Smith Barney.
Irving is the past president of the Nevada Professional Coaches Association, Economic Development Chair of the National Association of Women Business Owners (NAWBO) of Southern Nevada, on the board of the Las Vegas Foundation for an Independent Tomorrow (FIT) and is actively involved in the Las Vegas Chamber's Leadership Las Vegas Program. She was also a finalist in the 2008 Women of Distinction Awards sponsored by NAWBO Southern Nevada.