Mind Matters: Four ways to create an agile and a stress resilient mind

Mind Matters: Four ways to create an agile and a stress resilient mind

Change is no longer a constant. It’s in a mode of acceleration. And to be able to keep up with this change, the mind matters. Research shows that it takes us about 25 minutes of focused work to reach our peak mental performance, but on average, a person distracts themselves every three minutes. This constant stop start affects both our agility and resilience. It brings great fatigue and tremendously reduces our effectiveness.  A present, non-distracted mind can be both agile and resilient.

Here are four ways to achieve that

1. Breathing: It is very difficult to control the mind with the mind. The people and situations we don’t want to think about are the ones we think about. In fact the harder we try the worst it gets. Remember those nights when you tried hard to fall asleep? However, the breath can prove to be an effective tool to manage the mind. We have probably told someone at some point to just take a few deep breaths to gain control over the situation. Researchers have found that there is a direct link between the breath and the state of mind, and using the right breathing techniques can leave us with a mind that is present, focused and resilient.  

2. Meditation: Meditation is a great tool to relax and declutter the mind. However, in reality most of us struggle to do that when we sit to ‘meditate’. Meditation need not involve removing all the thoughts from the mind, having it blank. The purpose of meditation is to relax the mind, and trying to remove all thoughts is just the opposite. Having thoughts in mediation are fine. Less thoughts is the result of meditation, not the process. 

3. Silence: A verbal and digital time out for a day or two, done under the right guidance, along with the use of breathing techniques and meditations results in deep detox and allows the mind to relax completely. It also provides the opportunity to self-reflect and tap into the inner source of creativity and joy. In over a decade and half of helping clients with resilience, agility and burnout, we have found that silence, although unconventional, is a very high impact solution. 

4. Introspection: Self-reflection can allow us to understand our own minds better. Allows us to be more aware, therefore giving us the ability to develop acceptance which is crucial to bring about any transformation.

Gaurav has conducted stress management programs for 10 years in Europe and USA. His clients include Deutsche Bank, Nivea, Reckitt Benkiser and London Business School. He is an engineering graduate from IIT-Mumbai and an MBA from Cornell University. Gaurav worked in the banking industry for 12 years in Mumbai, New York and London.