Employees practice mindfulness meditation at work. Employees practice mindfulness meditation at work.

How to incorporate mindfulness meditation in the workplace

A Harvard University study found that we spend nearly half our waking lives with wandering minds.1 When you’re trying to get something done, whether at work or at home, your mind may wander and derail your goals. Mindfulness meditation is an effective way to quiet your mind, keep you focused on your tasks and stay present in the moment. It can also be an effective practice in the workplace.

With mindfulness meditation, you try to stay in the moment of what you are doing. You pay attention to your thoughts, but you do not judge them or become involved with them.2 This practice combines concentrating on what you are doing while being aware of actions or distractions around you, but not reacting to them.3

This relatively new form of meditation is known to have several benefits.

  • Improved thinking. The University of California (UC), Davis, Center for Mind and Brain completed a 7-year study in 2018 showing how meditation/mindfulness training increases the ability to sustain attention. The improvement in cognition led to improvement in the brain’s decision-making strategies and problem-solving abilities, both of which support critical thinking and crisis management.4
  • Reduced stress. Another study from the Center for Mind and Brain at UC Davis confirmed a correlation between mindfulness and cortisol levels, which are linked to stress. The study revealed that participants saw major benefits within only a few weeks of starting meditation.5 Techniques like mindfulness meditation may ease health issues commonly associated with stress. It can improve healing, improve the immune system and impact blood pressure.6
  • Coping with chronic pain. The practice of mindfulness meditation can help people cope with chronic pain. Eric Garland, a professor and associate dean at the University of Utah College of Social Work, completed a study showing that mindfulness breathing can immediately reduce pain by 23%.7 While mindfulness meditation isn’t long-lasting, it can provide a temporary reduction in pain.8

How to incorporate mindfulness meditation in the workplace

It’s easy for you and your employees to start practicing workplace mindfulness. Here are some mindfulness practices and tips you may want to share with your employees:

  • Conduct micro sessions. Every hour, stop and concentrate on your breath for 2 to 3 minutes. Stay in the moment and then return to work.9
  • Eat a meal and mindfully meditate. Find a quiet corner or head outside to enjoy your meal mindfully. Practice being present and aware of your surroundings without focusing on the past or future, only the current moment.
  • Breathe deeply in a rhythmic pattern, only focusing on each breath. Start with a few minutes of focus and work your way up to 20 minutes.10

Go365® members can access the MyLife™ meditation app for daily wellness check-ins and personalized activities to support relaxation and get better sleep. By completing mindfulness logs in the Go365 App, members can earn Points.

Humana’s Employee Assistance Program (EAP) and Work-Life Services offer confidential support for stress management, emotional issues, balancing career and family obligations, relationship and addiction concerns plus other daily needs and life events.

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Go365 is not an insurance product and is not available with all Humana health plans. This is a general description of services which are subject to change. Product features may vary by client. Please refer to Customer Support for more information.

From time to time, Go365 may make available items and services from third-party vendors. While some services are provided at no additional cost to you, if you choose to use certain items and services, you may incur additional fees that are not covered by your wellness program. Similar items or services may be available at no or reduced cost under Go365 or health coverage, if available. You should consult your Go365 program or health coverage documents for more information. Third-party vendors may provide compensation to Humana. Humana does not endorse the items or services provided by third-party vendors.

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Sources:

  1. Jen Rose Smith, “5 reasons to start a mindfulness practice – and how it can help you,” CNN, last accessed June 9, 2021, https://www.cnn.com/2021/06/03/health/mindfulness-practice-meditation-wellness/index.htmlOpens in new window.
  2. Holly J. Bertone, “Which Type of Meditation Is Right for Me?” Healthline, last accessed June 9, 2021, https://www.healthline.com/health/mental-health/types-of-meditationOpens in new window.
  3. “Which Type of Meditation Is Right for Me?”
  4. Laura Sage, “Six Proven Benefits of Meditation In the Workplace,” Forbes Business Council, last accessed June 9, 2021, https://www.forbes.com/sites/forbesbusinesscouncil/2020/08/03/six-proven-benefits-of-meditation-in-the-workplace/?sh=64f318a3fa88Opens in new window.
  5. “Six Proven Benefits of Meditation In the Workplace.”
  6. Jen Rose Smith, “5 reasons to start a mindfulness practice – and how it can help you,” CNN, last accessed June 9, 2021, https://www.cnn.com/2021/06/03/health/mindfulness-practice-meditation-wellness/index.htmlOpens in new window.
  7. “5 reasons to start a mindfulness practice – and how it can help you.”
  8. “5 reasons to start a mindfulness practice – and how it can help you.”
  9. “Meditation on the Job | Practicing Mindfulness at Work,” Mindworks, last accessed June 9, 2021, https://mindworks.org/blog/meditation-on-the-job/Opens in new window.
  10. Christine Bernier Lienke, “How to Meditate at Work: Tips to Launch a Regular Meditation Practice,” Flex Jobs, last accessed June 9, 2021, https://www.flexjobs.com/blog/post/how-to-meditate-at-work/Opens in new window.

Go365 is not an insurance product and is not available with all Humana health plans. This is a general description of services which are subject to change. Please refer to Customer Support for more information.

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