Stress management & productivity at your desk: on moving (part 2).

Following on our previous article and our interview at CNNMoney Switzerland, we will guide you through your body today with a simple and quick way to release tension effectively, directly at your desk and without changing clothes. Because all you need to start living a more sustainable and empowered business life is to breathe and to move consciously, with calm and awareness. And as you will see, taking a moment to be mindful and aware of your body while you work can have a major and direct impact on your wellbeing and productivity.

Move to release tensions and prevent them from building up.

We can feel our body and we are the only who can do this for ourselves. This is why it is our own responsibility and no one else’s, to check regularly on how we are feeling physically through the day. Sure, it is easy to get lost up there in our thoughts and to operate all day long from our all mighty mind. But as long as we stay there, we are not making any connection to what our body is telling us and so we miss out on very valuable information. Though, once we start taking our body into consideration as well, we find that we can start to understand and use the signals it sends us to operate at a much higher and sustainable level. 

Once we start taking our body into consideration as well, we find that we can start to understand and use the signals it sends us.

Is your head tense and you cannot think straight? Then, look for tensions at the base.

Do you know that feeling when your head feels constricted, compressed, everything in your mind is blurry, confused and your thinking capacity seems to be momentarily unaccessible? Then close your eyes for a minute, breathe naturally and notice if you can feel any tension in your neck, at the base of your head. Softly tilt your head up and down, breathing in as you look up, breathing out as you bring your chin to the chest. Repeat 5 times. Then move your head from side to side, looking over your shoulders. Inhale as you turn to one side, exhale as you bring your head back to centre. Repeat 5 times again, breathing slowly and focusing the sensations in your neck. To loosen up tensions even further, reach for the base of your head on both sides of your neck with your fingertips and give yourself a little massage. Apply a gentle pressure with your fingers as you walk them on the area, make small circles and see if you can feel any tense spots of knots there. Keep breathing and massaging this place mindfully for a few more seconds. 

Neck moves are a great and effective way to release tensions in the neck, thereby preventing headaches.

Neck moves are a great and effective way to release tensions in the neck, thereby preventing headaches.

For more tips and videos to help you be at your best in business and real life situations, check our Youtube channel and our website.

Why you want to set your own deadlines, even if you think you still have time.

Have you ever felt so clear in your mind about how you wanted your project to look like up to the smallest details yet you do not take action straight away and drag it with you for days and weeks. No matter what it is, your presentation outline, your living room decoration or your next event location, when you can picture a result with such clarity, there is no point in putting it to later. Here is why it pays off to make anything that already exists in your mind tangible to others, as soon as you can.

Procrastination does not feed the right side of your self.

I had a very precise idea of the items that were missing in my website, for months. And even though this was already the third iteration of my business presence online, I knew exactly what was missing for me to feel that I could fully rely on my website as being operational, insightful, informative and easy for my customers to navigate. Of course, spending hours on this fourth version did not seem to be the most urgent action item on my to-dos so I kept dragging it for weeks. In this time, the mental pictures kept paying me regular visits, which in turn reminded my inner-critic that there is still “so much” left that I hadn’t achieved yet. As you can imagine, this is not the greatest boost for your self-esteem nor for your motivation. Plus, it makes it harder for you to focus on all the other tasks you chose to prioritise instead. While you are busy distracting yourself with these, you are still neglecting and not doing the other. 

By putting things to later, you are reminding your inner-critic that there is still “so much” you haven’t achieved yet.

Set your own non-negotiable ultimatum or it will be set upon you.

My ultimatum was the broadcast day in the next 2-3 weeks of an interview I gave. I knew that before that day, I wanted the REAL LIFE YOGA website to have numbers of brand new features: our Youtube channel up to date, the online videos of all the yoga methods and breathing exercises we use in our coaching uploaded on the page, a separate section for each of the services we offer, from corporate, online coaching and real life mentoring as well as an online shop making it easier for my clients to learn, pick and choose the best service for them - all of this in a more colourful and light design. And I thought I would still have time in the next two weeks to drag it a bit further until I’d eventually sit down to do it. Right... I actually had two days left before broadcast and spent the two nights up and working to make all the above true. I knew I could do it and this was now all the time I had. And because I knew exactly what had to be done, I could trust my inspiration and let all my creative juice run freely. No judging or questioning any of the elements that I had pictured.

Spare yourself the panic and negative self-talk by setting a non-negotiable deadline.

Eventually I managed, but I also know that I could have saved valuable sleeping time and spared myself the panic and the negative self-talk if I had set a non-negotiable deadline to myself before. This was my proof right there, that there is no point in waiting before implementing what was so clear to me. So if you don’t want deadlines to jump at you sooner than later, make sure that you set them yourself, consciously, and give your very best to honour them.

 

And here it is, our brand new and beautiful website! Make sure you visit, say hi, sign up for your free 30min discovery call and share any input or question you may have. We are happy to help and to hear from you.

Your employees HAVE resources, they ARE NOT resources to use and replace.

I attended the first Hacking HR event in Zurich last week. A wonderful initiative that gathered a panel of HR professionals and experts to question the reality and the future of human resources, sparking a lot of disruptive conversations, in relation to learning, to AI, to culture and to the “resources” themselves. If you are looking for how this relates to giving your team the tools to be at their best, no matter what challenges they face in their business life, then be my guest and read on.

One key element that caught my attention was the newly acknowledged necessity that each person within a company ought to be treated and considered as a talent. Without positively discriminating a few and enrolling them in so-called talent programs while negatively discriminating the others by leaving them figure it all out by themselves in their day-to-day job. This was the point made by Liliane Kuert and rightly so, she compared this with playing in an orchestra. Would you pay a high price ticket to come listen to an orchestra in which only the soloist is worth listening to and the rest of the orchestra, well… kind of plays and does its own thing? As a manager, is this how you want your business to look or sound like?

Well, this is exactly the point, if you want an orchestra or your company to be playing at the very best of its capacity, you need wonderful people that have an intrinsic motivation to give the best they have at work, every single day. And this won’t work because you have put a few of them in the spotlight of being a “talent” while the others are considered “valuable resources”. You need to give every one of them the room and legitimacy to take on their role seriously, with responsibility, confidence and empowerment, as if this role was the best they ever had.

When you take a moment to consider the reality of stress in the corporate world, you can come exactly to the same conclusion. There are not just those who are better at handling it and all the others who don’t and will go for back problems, sick leaves and burnouts. There should be no such thing as full-on mindfulness training for your top manager and leaders only, while the rest of your employees who work at the front shall attempt to manage stress without any help on top of their other projects. The truth is that you, as a company, have a pool of highly skilled and talented people who simply need the space and guidance to be able to tap into the resources they already have within themselves in order to be at their best.

And if you are still unsure about how to do this, then simply know that it can be done through each and every one of them becoming more aware of themselves while they work, by knowing how to breathe and move simply in any given situation to be in control of the way they handle, react and sustain challenges that come to them in their business life. This is what we do in REAL LIFE YOGA and I invite you to watch our video to open your eyes as to what your team is capable of when it is given the methods to be successful and sustainable in their day-to-day life, inside and outside their business.

 

For more tips and videos to help you be at your best in business life, check our Youtube channel and our website.

The key to your productive afternoon is in the twist.

The afternoon is coming and your are looking for a quick and easy tip to avoid the midday slumber? Look no further, this short exercise will help you get your power back and even help you digest. So among all the methods we use in REAL LIFE YOGA, my tip for you today is a twist. And it can be done directly at your desk with whatever clothes you have on, and no matter what you ate just before. Here you go directly to the youtube video.

The spinal twist step by step:

1. Sit up straight, back of the chair behind you or to your right side, feet, knees and hips in one line. 

2. Inhale: take your right arm up and reach for the back of your chair.

3. Put your left hand on the outer edge of your right thigh to help you twist to the right side.

4. Twist from the bottom of the spine upwards, looking over your right shoulder last.

5. Breathe in your twist 5 more times. Inhale: lengthen through the spine, exhale: twist a little bit deeper to the right.

6. Breathe out and slowly come back to center. Repeat on the other side.

Why it works.

Twists have many benefits. They are wonderful and short ways to refresh your body by stimulating blood circulation and metabolism. Because you create a slight compression of the organs in the abdomen as you twist, fresh blood will flow to your organs and associated glands as you release the twist, helping remove toxins and bringing them plenty of oxygen for their good functioning. Also, twisting once or twice a day helps you keep your spine young, preserving its valuable range of motion with this simple movement, especially in the lower - thoracic and lumbar - parts of the spine that are less mobile.

When to use it. 

After lunch or breakfast to improve digestion. When you have been sitting too long and need an easy way to gather your energy and focus for the rest of the day.

For more tips and methods to help you be at your best in business life, visit www.reallifeyoga.ch.

How to make the most out of the space behind your eyes.

The ones among us who have been to a yoga class know that their favourite part is the relaxation, eyes closed, laying down on the floor. And sometimes you may see colours or patterns in the space behind your closed eyes. Well, at least if your mind is not filled up with thoughts or wandering away in the future or in the past. Actually there are plenty of useful tricks one can do in this space when you take a moment to be present there. And surprisingly, it can even help you in your business life. 

Master a situation before you are there

As we have seen in our previous article, visualization is a powerful tool which you can use whenever you decide. It can help you prepare yourself mentally for an important moment, seeing yourself directly in the situation you are about to face in order to feel more empowered and comfortable with it. Whichever way you wish to master that moment, whatever it is that you would like to feel in this situation, you can already see yourself in the moment, in the place, embodying this feeling of empowerment, confidence, strength and calm that you wish for yourself.

Helping thoughts out of your mind

If your mind is filled up with thoughts and you want to take a short break from them, try this method. Close your eyes and see the empty space behind your closed eyes. Notice the colours, perhaps even the textures or shapes. Gather all your attention in this space, no matter how big or how small it seems to you. When a thought tries to take your awareness away from this space, imagine you can put this thought in a soap bubble that moves away with the wind. Every single thought or distraction is a soap bubble and you can quietly observe them floating in that space, disappearing on the side or in the distance just the way they appeared. The best thing about this is that if you try to interact with them, off you go, they will burst out before you can.


For more tips and videos to help you be at your best in business life, check our Youtube channel and our website.