Monday, 17 February 2014

Mindfulness Meditation

A number of my cycling buddies work for IBM Australia. So many, in fact, that I think IBM could actually be a front for an illegal cycling organisation. So I was amused to see a recent column in The Australian entitled App stress buster:
Technology giant IBM has found that a web-based not-for-profit app is reducing stress among its employees, after 200 staff undertook a trial late let year. At a time when many staff were most stressed, the company worked with Mindfulness Meditation, encouraging workers to undertake 10 minutes of "mindfulness" three times a week for six weeks.
One reason that many staff were stressed could be that, like many companies, last year IBM rationalised some areas of its Australian workforce, reducing staff numbers and reviewing its operations, increasing the stress levels of those remaining.

The article goes on to say that
The Melbourne-designed app was created by psychologists to tailor the program to corporate life. An IBM spokeswomen said preliminary results showed a reduction in participants' perceived stress levels by helping people clear the mind and improve focus and performance by mastering thoughts.
Does indeed sound very "zen". Also very useful for cycling.
The program was designed to increase levels of attention, focus and subsequent productivity, to improve awareness of cognition and emotions, to enable people to make better decisions under pressure, to increase resilience, general health, and to increase wellbeing and self-care.
Not sure about the emotions, and no explicit mention of cycling there—but all of these skills sound like they've been designed with cycling in mind.

According to the article, more details are are available here. See also the post by Leith Mitchell, IBM’s Growth Markets Diversity Recruitment Leader.

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