Redefine the ‘Grind’ With Mindfulness

“All work without no play makes Jack a dull boy…”

May is National Mental Health month and it’s important to highlight the fixation with “the grind,” as well as how it affects people across all industries. The obsession, more times than not, attributes to mental instability through stress and fatigue and can often leave us dependent on outside resources to either escape the overwhelm or simply stay awake to push ourselves more.

In lieu of this, entrepreneurs, freelancers, and workplaces alike are turning to more mindful business practices. Although mindfulness isn’t new, it is becoming a more intricate part of the corporate cultures across the nation. CEOs recognize creating mindful organizations are more lucrative to the bottom line and reduce turnover.

It’s a dream to love what you do and mindful business practices assist in manifesting this dream.

Make mindfulness a skill

Social Media leads the charge with giving people a bird’s eye view of what appears to be hyper-focused work habits and the “glow-up.” However, is pushing the message of the “grind” lucrative to our overall well-being? Does the inundate of quotes and memes designed to encourage living one’s best life work for or against the masses?

Mindfulness Consultant, Clarissa Romero works with educational institutions and workplaces promoting the importance of mindfulness. When asked about harnessing mindfulness as a workplace skill, she had this to offer:

When unhappiness or stress projects a shadow in your work or personal life, mindfulness allows you to observe your thoughts and reactions without taking them in or personally. In essence, mindfulness allows you to catch negative thought patterns before they drag you down, Clarisa explained. It begins the process of putting you back in control of your life.

Though urban vernacular defines “the grind” as working tirelessly to achieve a goal, it’s removed from placing us in control of customizing our grind and is only shaped around the blueprint from others who precede us. This also doesn’t account for being present in the moment. The grind constantly urges us to work until the wheels fall off, burn the midnight oil, and join the #teamnosleep tribe but if we’re grinding so hard, when do we take the time to be grateful for how far we’ve come?

Be mindful of the food on your table

Mental health amid the grind expands to what we place in our bodies. Diet and exercise are key elements to implementing mindfulness as a skill and practice. Serial Entrepreneur Neil Grimmer took his passion for business and health and merged them together to create Habit—a company which designs personalized lifestyle changes to achieve long-term health.

Grimmer was inspired to create Habit from helping his wife recover from breast cancer, as well as, transforming his own health. In designing the ecosystem for Habit, Grimmer took account of how nutrition played an intricate role with work-life balance or the lack thereof. We get so caught up in the grind, we often forget to eat and when we do, the options chosen aren’t the greatest. Grimmer recognized this routine and made the shift.

“What I did adopt right away, and I adopted this from my wife, was mindfulness and gratitude,” says Grimmer. He recognized the mental shift to how he approached life was necessary for the success of his new lifestyle through nutrition but in business overall. Grimmer notes, “Whether I’m sitting with my team, whether I’m negotiating a deal or whatever it may be, it’s being absolutely in the moment. It’s recognizing the voices that go through your head, the distractions that come in, and not being moved by them, but rather letting them pass in and out of consciousness.

This prompted Grimmer to implement mindful nutrition which asserts it’s not just what you eat but your mental state when you eat and while you’re eating that matters.

It’s time we redefine the grind.

Many of us are enamored by Will Smith’s Instagram but what we miss is that he’s living his best life. He’s aware and present in each moment. Who’s to say that the grind has to be absent of this? Mindfulness isn’t exclusive to spirituals and the like, it’s a universal practice which can be applied across every aspect of our lives. It’s time we develop a “mindful grind.”

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