Jacqueline Carter of The Potential Project joins us to discuss the science of Mindfulness and why it’s very likely, the one ingredient that most of us can improve if we’re serious about elevating our lives — both personally and professionally.
Mindfulness at Work
Nothing is so simple as sitting still; yet nothing is as difficult as remaining in stillness. For the better part of two decades now, I’ve been a student of mindfulness and mediation, and while my life is infinitely better as a result; the process never gets easier. Creating a mindful brain is the work of a lifetime, still it’s the one gift that we each owe ourselves; it’s what helps us let go of our fears; embrace our vulnerabilities, see the good in ourselves and others; and perhaps most important of all, it’s the window inside our never ending thought patterns.
For the longest time, the big mindful hurdle for me has been to step back and look at my thoughts from an objective viewpoint – in other words, to just observe. When I remember as such, I find myself in an engaged state of mind; but the vast majority of the time, I’m just as lost in my thoughts. Nothing has been more important to my personal growth than this one notion that I’m not that voice in my head. It remains a mystery to me and others, but I keep these words from Gautama Buddha close by to remind me that, “it is a man’s own mind, not his enemy or foe, that lures him to evil ways.”
I was recently introduced to the potential project, the work of Rasmus Hougaard, Jacqueline Carter, and Gillian Coutts in their effort to help organizations apply mindfulness practices to enhance workplace performance. Their work is anchored in scientific research, and as you’ll notice in their latest book, One Second Ahead), it starts with learning to master your attention. I was delighted at the opportunity to speak with Jacqueline, and as you’ll notice, I felt it important to take a step back and first understand the neuroscience of mindfulness before we uncovered the specific strategies they lay forth.
Here are the areas we discuss:
- The evolution of mindfulness and its scientific impact
- The recurring misconceptions surrounding mindfulness practices
- The correlation between attention and thoughts
- Why emotional balance has nothing to do with surpassing your emotions
- Enhancing your mental energy
- The central characteristics of mindfulness
- The magic of a beginner’s mind