20 Lies We Tell Ourselves Daily

20 Lies We Tell Ourselves Daily

  1. “I have no choice.” One of the biggest lies is the belief that there are no options. Even people in terrible circumstances such as concentration camps, false imprisonment, and severe abuse have options in what they absorb, believe, and accept as truth.
  2. “I’ll never love again.” When a heart is broken, a person believes that they will never find love again. But love isn’t something you catch, it is something you give. The only limitation in loving is the one a person places on themselves.
  3. “I’ll never be good enough.” This is another lie that is rooted in trauma between the ages of two and five. Healing from this trauma and restating the reverse can resolve this lie.
  4. “That didn’t happen.” Denial is the most powerful defence mechanism because it can erase a traumatic moment as if it never happened. The problem is that whatever is denied becomes a haunting, magically appearing out of nowhere and causing destruction.
  5. “It wasn’t that bad.” Minimising difficult circumstances sounds good initially because there is some acknowledgement of the problem. However, dismissing intense feelings reinforces stuffing them which leads to explosions later.
  6. “It was the worst thing ever.” Making a mountain out of a mole hill is equally problematic. By increasing the size of an event, thought, or feeling, they can become larger than life.
  7. “I handled that well.” When the only counsel a person has is their own self, they tend to believe their version of what happened. Getting outside perspective and feedback from others improves self-awareness.
  8. “I’m worthless.” This particular statement is usually the result of some trauma between the ages of six and twelve. Unresolved pain can lead to a lifetime of suffering.
  9. “I’m the dumbest person.” This belief originated from someone else. It could be a parent, teacher, friend, student, or partner who repeated this until it was wrongly absorbed as truth.
  10. “No one can ever love me.” Hidden shame, grief, or guilt causes a person to believe that they are unlovable. Bringing the issue out in the open resolves this quickly.
  11. “Life isn’t worth living.” Every life has good and bad times, times of peace and war, and times of joy and sorrow. What makes the good, peaceful, and joyful times so wonderful is the contrast to the bad, warring, and sorrowful times.
  12. “I didn’t do anything wrong.” While a person’s actions might be correct, the thoughts behind it might not be. Self-awareness looks for ways to improve, not to escape responsibility.
  13. “It’s all my fault.” Accepting unnecessary responsibility for a trauma, event, or circumstance removes the accountability of others. This can be very damaging for their own growth and development.
  14. “I have no self-control.” This is used to diminish a person’s responsibility for behaviour that is problematic. Addicts frequently say this so they can justify their poor decisions.
  15. “It’s not my fault I reacted that way.” By casting blame on others for the poor reaction, a person falsely dismisses their responsibility while simultaneously holding others accountable.
  16. “I can’t help it.” As soon as a person says this, they have limited their choices to a few poor options. Just by saying the reverse, a person can open themselves up to more possibilities.
  17. “I have to have …” The sentence can be completed with a person, thing, money, or circumstance. Ironically, even when these items are obtained, there is a transfer to the next big item instead of finding satisfaction from within.
  18. “If only I had done …” The assumption of “if only” statements is that things could be different if they had responded another way. This is not always the case; sometimes the end result would still be the same regardless of the “if only”.
  19. “I’m not good at anything.” Being good at something requires effort. Talent will only take a person so far, the rest is all hard-work.
  20. “I have no purpose/passion/mission.” One of the lies of our society is that everyone needs to find their purpose/passion/mission in order to live life fully. A person can have a very full life while discovering their passion. Often this is not realised until a person is at the end of their career, not at the beginning.

Do any of these sound familiar? When these type of thoughts drop into your mind…
Be Mindful – This is the key thought we use to give our mind an instruction to…
Pause – We quieten our mind for a few seconds, as we do this, we…
Connect! – We connect with where we are using our five senses. We connect with who we’re with (with full presence). Most importantly, we connect with our Source Energy using our sixth sense or intuition.
If you are struggling with your thoughts, contact me to schedule a single one-on-one session. That’s all it takes to get your true mindful practice off to a flying start.
Mindfully Yours with Awareness Always! 🙏 John

True Essence of Mindfulness

This two minute clip by Jon Kabat-Zinn explains the true essence of mindfulness. The following snippet is from my mentoring service Mindful Insights:

True mind·ful·ness (2017) – A mental state achieved by focusing our awareness on the present moment, while calmly acknowledging our thoughts, feelings, bodily sensations, and surrounding environment. True mindfulness is characterised mainly by acceptance of our thoughts and feelings without judging whether they are right or wrong. True mindfulness focuses our mind on what is being sensed moment-by-moment, rather than ruminating on the past or the future. The ‘ful’ in mindfulness means being fully present.

My all time favourite definition is from 2009 when I trained to be an ACT Therapist with Dr Russ Harris [writer of The Happiness Trap (which I highly recommend)]:

“Mindfulness is a transformative mental state of awareness which involves focusing our attention with flexibility, openness, and curiosity.”

This simple definition tells us three important things:

  1. mindfulness is a process of awareness, not thinking. It involves paying attention to our experience in this moment as opposed to being caught up in thoughts. In a mindful state, we can let difficult thoughts and feelings freely flow through us, without getting all caught up in them or pushed around by them, and without getting into a struggle with them.
  2. mindfulness involves a particular attitude: one of openness and curiosity. Even if our experience in this moment is difficult, painful or unpleasant, we can be open to and curious about it instead of running from, fighting with or trying to avoid it. [eg: with alcohol or drugs (legal or illegal)]
  3. mindfulness involves flexibility of attention: the ability to consciously direct, broaden or focus attention on different aspects of experience. We can use mindfulness to ‘wake up,’ connect with ourselves and appreciate the fullness of each moment of life. We can use it to improve our self-knowledge – to learn more about how we feel, think and react. We can use it to connect deeply and intimately with the people we care about, including ourselves. And we can use it to consciously influence our own behaviour and increase our range of responses to the world we inhabit. It is the actions of living consciously – a profound way to enhance psychological resilience and increase life satisfaction.

Be Mindful… Pause… Connect! Yours in Awareness Always! – John

Benefits of a Mindful Practice

Feedback about the Benefits of a Mindful Practice

I have been receiving excellent feedback from people who have subscribed to my Mindful Insights Mentoring Service. My favourite comment, “It’s great having only one thing to work on each week.” Some of the benefits mentioned are:

  • “Helps me reduce stress.”
  • “Helps me to be in touch with my emotions, but not ruled by them.”
  • “Helps me to be more balanced.”
  • “Helps me live a better life and enjoy the life I have.”
  • “Starts my day off right.”
  • “I feel more creative.”
  • “Helps me to focus on what’s important.”
  • “I am less reactive.”
  • “Helps me sleep better.”
  • “Greater control over my life.”
  • “More peace.”
  • “Makes me feel better mentally and physically.”
  • “Helps me focus on the good things in life.”
  • “My decision making is clearer.”

Mindfulness is not a cure or quick fix. It is a process that requires practice, that’s why it is called a mindful practice. The hardest thing to do when I started my practice was remembering to practice! Several people have commented how they love receiving an insight every Friday. They read over the weekend and practice throughout their week.

I have retired as a mentor with Juvenile Justice to focus on establishing Mindfulness Mentoring Institute. I devote my mornings to teaching and coaching sessions and keep my afternoons appointment free to receive phone and skype calls. Please feel welcome to call for an obligation free chat about my certificate course or mentoring service. I am available 7 days between noon & 4pm NSW time. Phone 0418 864 162

My main message: Be Mindful… Pause… Connect!
Mindfully Yours with Love, Joy & Peace Always! – John

Mindfulness Day 2016

1Rocks FB

The first Sunday in May is Mindfulness Day. This year, it is 1st May! You may remember the first Mindfulness Day in 2014 when I created a facebook event and invited Australians with mental suffering. 4,700 people turned up and Mindfulness Day launched Mindful May. I wrote a blog every day in May and the event was truly amazing with hundreds of lives transformed. The event became my book Mindful Actions and thousands more lives have been turned around since. I am amazed by the feedback I receive, I especially love hearing from people coming off meds or waking up by way of their mindful practice. This year I have created another facebook event and will be sharing my story, my knowledge and my vision. Please join and be part of the mindful revolution by sharing this event. Go a step further and send me your photo to dress up. For more info, go to mindfullyMAD.org and click on Mindfulness Day.

How is your mindful practice coming along? I was asked by a magazine to write about developing a mindful practice, this is what I wrote:

Mindful practice is about silencing our minds with awareness and focusing on being fully present with what is happening. Having a mindful practice enables us to develop more awareness of our thoughts and feelings. We are able to notice and observe what is going on without getting all caught up, especially the unhelpful and negative stuff. A mindful practice also enables us to pause and create more silence and peace of mind throughout our day.

Mindfulness doesn’t stop the never-ending flow of mental chatter, nor does it stop the ebb and flow of our feelings. Sometimes we avoid practising mindfulness because we feel that something is going on deep down inside. It could be that we’re feeling anger, fear, sadness, past trauma, powerless, unmotivated or just tired. We know if we pause or stop we might have to deal with what is happening. Instead of stopping to acknowledge and feel what is coming to the surface, we distract ourselves by eating chocolate, drinking alcohol, taking drugs, focusing on our to-do list, watching TV, working too hard or many other distractions.

As we develop our mindful practice, we learn to recognise these unhelpful feelings for what they really are, just feelings. We learn that feelings aren’t facts and we make room for them or simply choose to let them go. A mindful practice helps us to connect fully with our whole being, mind, body, heart and soul. Then by deepening our practice of being present, the connection with ourselves deepens. We feel more connected to love, joy, peace, aliveness, strength and many other qualities. The flow on effect is the ability to deepen our presence with our loved ones and everyone we connect with in our daily lives.

The very essence of mindfulness is awareness in its purest form. With practice, mindful awareness becomes second nature, your home base and your refuge. With practice, your sense of awareness (or the silent observer as I like to call it) starts to abide more and more in your daily life. With practice, you will be able to readily step back and be the silent observer of your thoughts and feelings. Notice how I keep repeating ‘with practice’? Practice is the overall key to developing mindfulness and I cannot overstate it enough.

Use of the key thought ‘Be Mindful’ is a great way to trigger instant mindful awareness, no matter what is happening in any given moment. Use ‘Be Mindful’ to activate the silent observer of your thoughts and feelings without any judgement. When you activate the silent observer, you are also tuning in to your sixth sense or intuition. It is a sure way to tap into your creative genius. It is also a sure way to gain clarity of mind and a strong sense of priority. Be sure to pause and tune in at regular intervals to maintain your mindful practice.

Mindfully Yours with Love, Joy & Peace Always! – John

Mindfulness Masters

Elephant MM Logo1

What does it mean to be a mindfulness master? What are the qualities of a mindfulness master? Insightful, kind and loving come to mind but it’s hard to be sure unless we ourselves are masters. I started my mindful practice in 2009 and also started an intensive five year study into the many aspects of mindfulness. In 2014, I wrote a book called Mindful Actions and have witnessed many lives transformed through mindful practice. Here is a list of the most prominent qualities that mindfulness masters aspire to. Keep in mind that there are many stages to go through to become a master and everyone, both men and women alike, are somewhere on their path to mindfulness mastery.

  1. Loving, Kind and Empathic

Mindfulness masters are loving, kind and empathic. They genuinely care about other people, regardless of whether people care about them in return. Masters know that other people provide them with the spiritual nourishment needed to continue growing. They fully realise that everyone and everything is their teacher. Masters are so full of love that it has no choice but to overflow to all around them.

  1. Open-Minded and Insightful

Mindfulness masters are open-minded and insightful. They are able to see the world with clarity, without attachment to preconceived ideas about people, places and things. This enables them to observe the world without judgement or jumping to conclusions. Limiting beliefs are replaced with clarity of vision and understanding the bigger picture.

  1. Inner Strength

Mindfulness masters have great inner strength. They have learned intuitive ways of connecting with people and skillful ways of connecting with source energy within. Masters draw inner strength from our divine creator and understands their connection to life itself. They no longer have a need for the power struggles that most people engage in.

  1. Presence

Mindfulness masters are fully present with everyone they encounter. They have developed their own mindful practice and are very skilful in maintaining presence and awareness in all their relationships. Masters use all five physical senses and understand the concept of the silent observer or sixth sense. They trust in the intuitive process, not only from people but also from the energy that is connected to life itself. Masters realise that intuition speaks into the silence between their thoughts.

  1. Leadership

Mindfulness masters lead by example. Having awakened to the point of understanding the nature of suffering, they are committed to helping other people find freedom from suffering. They lead with love and cooperation, rather than fear and control. People follow them because of who they are and what they stand for. Masters value empathy and listening skills very highly as leadership traits.

  1. Happy

Mindfulness masters are happy and joyful. They have a cheerful disposition and are willing to share their joy with others. Masters understand that happiness isn’t the destination… happiness is the journey! They are always optimistic that challenges have a resolution. Masters are also very proficient at turning negatives into positives.

  1. Ordinary

Mindfulness masters are unpretentious. They know their place in the universe, and don’t need validation from others. Masters have nothing to prove to anyone, including themselves. They’re humble nature allows them to be kind and gentle, and be open to everyone they encounter.

  1. Patient and Understanding

Mindfulness masters are patient and understanding. They have learnt to be patient through their own journey. Masters understand that things happen when they are meant to and that the next step comes at the right time. They understand the challenges of creating a rich, full and meaningful life and never condemn people for their missteps or mistakes.

  1. Peaceful and Easygoing

Mindfulness masters are peaceful and easygoing. This is because they are free of fear and other unwholesome emotions. They know that the human condition reaches beyond physical existence, so they no longer have any fear of the unknown. Masters are free of worry because they understand that inner peace comes from within, and not from external happenings. They also have freedom from suffering because they know that inner peace does not depend on material possessions or abundance.

  1. Emotionally Stable

Mindfulness masters are emotionally stable because they no longer have an ego that needs validation. They don’t get angry because they are understanding and compassionate toward those who have not yet fully awakened. Masters understand that the actions of others are often not the actions of their authentic self but actions from their egoic nature.

  1. Mindful of Health

Mindfulness masters are mindful of their health… physical, mental and emotional. They know that the mind, body and spirit must be in harmony in order to maintain balance and vitality. Masters have developed an understanding of physical and mental health and do not depend on others for their wellbeing.

  1. Committed to Mindful Practice

Mindfulness masters never forget how they achieved mindful mastery. They are very aware that it takes continuous effort to maintain their mindful practice. Above all, masters are mindfully aware of themselves and the world around them. They are curious and always willing to learn from others. Masters can see with great clarity and understand the true nature of their existence. At the same time, they recognise that it takes time to observe, investigate and gain the knowledge necessary to achieve mindfulness mastery.

This is not a comprehensive list of the qualities of mindfulness masters but these are the most prominent. The purpose for highlighting these qualities is to give us a compass to guide us on our mindful journey… a vision of the path that lies ahead. It takes real effort and dedication but it is well worth it. Are you a mindfulness master? Please consider joining the team of mindfulness mentors at mindfullyMAD.org (mindfully Making A Difference) Need a little training to be a mindfulness mentor? Take a look at my certificate course.

Mindfully Yours with Love, Joy and Peace Always! – John

What Mindfulness is Not

 

 

 

Swan Lake

One thing is certain… mindfulness is not easy, but it is simple. It doesn’t come naturally, that is why it requires much practice. It’s not about relaxing. Mindfulness just means noticing what’s happening, including the things we find difficult. It doesn’t involve listening to panpipes to escape your worries. It isn’t a meditation practice. Mindfulness is a practice for the whole of life. It’s about finding a different way to respond to experience throughout your day.

It isn’t about emptying your mind. Minds produce thoughts, it’s what they’re built for, and your mind keeps on producing them even if you do happen to be meditating. You can become calm and settled by learning to accept your thoughts, making room for them or letting them go. It is always good to remind yourself that thoughts are just that… thoughts. No need to dwell on them, fight with them, act on them or try to avoid them.

It isn’t Buddhist. It is true that mindfulness has it’s roots in the age of Buddha but no-one owns mindfulness. Mindfulness has evolved and has now become the merging of ancient eastern philosophy and the latest western psychology. The beauty of mindfulness is that it is not a religion at all. However, all religions could greatly benefit from having a mindful practice.

It isn’t a technique. Mindfulness isn’t something you do. It’s a way of being. It isn’t a way to fix our problems. Mindfulness can help eliminate depression, anxiety, stress or chronic pain, but not by fixing them. We learn to relate in a new way to the things that trouble us, rather than trying to make them go away. Having a mindful practice is about re-training our minds so that we can cope with whatever comes our way.

It isn’t about doing things slowly. Some mindfulness courses include things like eating a raisin slowly. That does help you to notice details that you may otherwise miss. It also highlights the fact that we often rush or go through the motions while thinking about other things. But that doesn’t mean that you should do everything slowly. A mindful practice is about doing things on purpose, even if they are sometimes at a fast pace.

It isn’t scientific. Research into the effects of mindfulness and its impact on the mind and body are impressive. It is helping to bring mindfulness into the mainstream. Science can measure what mindfulness does, but it can’t measure what it is. Measuring mindfulness is a science; practising it is an art that requires presence, awareness, connection and living in the moment.

It isn’t a fad. Mindfulness is certainly becoming popular, but is it a fad? Our communities are becoming more distracted than ever before. Mindlessness is rampant and there is a growing epidemic of mental suffering. Modern culture seems to be focused on wanting more, getting more and having more. Mindfulness is about being grateful in the moment and is here to stay!

This is from my certificate course Keys to Mindfulness Mentoring. Check it out, especially if you want to make a difference in young peoples lives. Mindfully Yours with Love, Joy and Peace Always! – John Shearer

Mindful Connection

Star Fish

We are All One, One with Spirit, One with Life!

Mindful connection is the goal of developing a mindful practice. Mindful connection with your loved ones, your friends and co-workers. Mindful connection with your authentic higher self which is part of universal spiritual energy. Mindful connection with life in all its diversity. A mindful practice is a process that brings about realisation of your true oneness with all that is.

Be Mindful is the key thought that helps in the transformational process. Be Mindful is the main theme in my book Mindful Actions and I teach it to all my clients. Be Mindful is the basis for every guided meditation that I conduct, whether in a group or in one-on-one sessions.

Being mindful is the ongoing practice of pausing your mind chatter and focusing your attention on the present moment with awareness. Anytime you find yourself in a stressful situation or under pressure, let Be Mindful be the trigger to take you to a place of peaceful presence or of heightened awareness. Use Be Mindful whenever you have an unhelpful thought or feeling, to shift focus to your values or purpose.

Use Be Mindful as a powerful trigger to pause and connect to your inner wisdom. Use Be Mindful as a magical trigger to silence your mind to enhance creativity and innovation. Use Be Mindful as a loving trigger that brings about full presence of mind, resulting in heightened intuition and intimacy in your relationships.

Mindfully Yours with Love, Joy & Peace Always! – John Shearer

Beliefs

1Bamboo Stone1

1982-1997 ~ I believed that I had an imbalance of chemicals in my brain. I believed I was mentally ill and would never be cured. I believed that I would have to take medications for the rest of my life. Professional people told me these things. People who had studied and been trained for many years in Universities.

1997-2009 ~ I had a spiritual awakening and believed in the power of Spirit. No more depression and no more meds. I believed the mind was like the moon. The moon has a light side as well as a dark side. For the first time in my life, everything made sense to me. All through history I could see the evidence of this spiritual game of chess. Love, joy and peace on one side versus hate, sadness and war on the other. Minds consumed by the light, dreaming, creating and full of life versus minds consumed by the darkside, nightmarish, destroying and suicidal.

2009-2013 ~ I started the study and practice of mindfulness. I felt driven and spent countless hours in front of the computer. 20-30 hours per week, it almost drove my wife insane. Mindfulness is all about awareness and being fully connected to spirit. It is the tool we all need to live a life of peace and happiness.

2013-End of Days ~ Osho said, “It’s not a question of learning much – on the contrary. It’s a question of unlearning much.” We all have beliefs based on what we have learned and what we have experienced. This in turn becomes our truth and we all have different truths.

The mind is like a computer and needs to be reset now and then. I decided to un-believe everything I had learned on my life’s journey. As thoughts came to mind, I used my silent observer (my heart) to test for truth. The results have been absolutely enlightening! This is your mindful action. Be warned; your mind is going to object strongly, just remember, you are not your mind!

Here are a few random thoughts:

  • What you believe has more power than what you dream or wish or hope for.
  • You become what you believe.
  • Don’t believe everything you think.
  • The reason you do the things you do is because you think the things you think.
  • The reason you think the things you think is because you believe the things you believe.
  • The root cause of your problems is not what you are doing – it is what you are thinking!
  • The worst thing you can do is believe that you don’t have a choice.
  • Life presents you with endless choices and opportunities if you care to step out and face your fears without limiting beliefs.
  • Only you can take the impossible and make it possible!

Be Mindful – and Open to All Possibilities! Love, Joy & Peace Always! – John

Grafton Mindfulness Group

Grafton Group

 

I have been practising and coaching mindfulness for six years now and have witnessed the massive impact that it has made on people’s work and life. They are more peaceful, happier, healthier, empathic, intuitive and excited about their lives.

This weekly group is starting on Saturday 21st February at 10am sharp at the Grafton Community & Function Centre, 59 Duke Street Grafton. All Welcome! If you can’t make it to the group, why not consider a one-on-one session with me? Another option is to purchase my book Mindful Actions. People are now buying multiple copies of my book to give away to friends. Friends who might be struggling, needing motivation or haven’t found their purpose yet.

Mindfully Yours with Love, Joy & Peace Always! – John Shearer bemindful@outlook.com.au

Mindfulness in Business

Thich Nhat Hanh

Thich Nhat Hanh: is mindfulness being corrupted by business and finance?

Mindfulness has become an increasingly popular topic among business leaders, with several key executives speaking publicly in recent months about how it helps them improve the bottom line. Arianna Huffington, editor in chief of the Huffington Post, in a blog post last month, wrote that “there’s nothing touchy-feely about increased profits. This is a tough economy… Stress-reduction and mindfulness don’t just make us happier and healthier, they’re a proven competitive advantage for any business that wants one.” But by focusing on the bottom-line benefits of mindfulness, are business leaders corrupting the core Buddhist practice?

Thich Nhat Hanh (Thay), is the 87-year-old Zen master considered by many to be the father of mindfulness in the west, says as long as business leaders practice “true” mindfulness, it does not matter if the original intention is triggered by wanting to be more effective at work or to make bigger profits. That is because the practice will fundamentally change their perspective on life as it naturally opens hearts to greater compassion and develops the desire to end the suffering of others.

Sitting in a lotus position on the floor of his monastery at Plum Village near Bordeaux, France, Thay went on to say: “If you know how to practice mindfulness you can generate peace and joy right here, right now. And you’ll appreciate that and it will change you. In the beginning, you believe that if you cannot become number one, you cannot be happy, but if you practice mindfulness you will readily release that kind of idea. We need not fear that mindfulness might become only a means and not an end because in mindfulness the means and the end are the same thing. There is no way to happiness; happiness is the way.”

But Thay, as the Zen master is known to his hundreds of thousands of followers around the world, points out that if executives are in the practice for selfish reasons, then they are experiencing a mere pale shadow of mindfulness.

“If you consider mindfulness as a means of having a lot of money, then you have not touched its true purpose,” he says. “It may look like the practise of mindfulness but inside there’s no peace, no joy, no happiness produced. It’s just an imitation. If you don’t feel the energy of brotherhood, of sisterhood, radiating from your work, that is not mindfulness.” As he puts it: “If you’re happy, you cannot be a victim of your happiness. But if you’re successful, you can be a victim of your success.”

Perhaps the most interesting intersection in the business world is between mindfulness and technology, as they appear to pull in opposite directions. The practice is all about slowing down and emptying the mind, while the digital revolution is speeding up our lives and filling our heads with vast quantities of information. Despite this, they have a long history together. One example was Apple CEO Steve Jobs fascination by Zen Buddhism. Other business leaders who practise mindfulness include Intermix CEO Khajak Keledjian, Aetna CEO Mark Bertolini, Salesforce.com CEO Marc Benioff and Zappos.com CEO Tony Hsieh, to name just a few.

Mindfulness has been linked for decades to the Californian lifestyle, where many technology companies are based. So it is no great surprise that Thay, who has sold more than 2 million books in the US, was invited to Silicon Valley by Google and was also asked to lead a private day of mindfulness for CEOs of 15 of the world’s most powerful technology companies.

Thay’s core message to the tech leaders he met was to use their global influence to focus on how they can contribute to making the world a better place, rather than on making as much money as possible. He and a group of monastics spent a day at Google’s headquarters, spending time with the senior management as well as leading around 700 employees through mindfulness discussions and sitting and walking meditation. So many staff wanted to take part that the company had to open up two additional locations to live stream his lecture.

Thay speaks of the sharp contrast between the normal frenetic pace of work at the technology giant and the sense of peace that came from sitting in silence during his day of mindfulness on the Googleplex campus. “The atmosphere was totally different,” he says. “There’s a silence, there’s a peace that comes from doing nothing. And in that space, they can realise the preciousness of time.”

During his visit, which was themed “intention, innovation, insight”, Thay met a number of senior Google engineers to discuss how the company can use technology to be more compassionate and effective in bringing positive change to the world, rather than increasing people’s stress and isolation, both from each other and from nature.

When they create electronic devices, they can reflect on whether that new product will take people away from themselves, their family and nature,” he says. “Instead they can create the kind of devices and software that can help them to go back to themselves, to take care of their feelings. By doing that, they will feel good because they’re doing something good for society.

At the day-long retreat with the CEOs, Thay led a silent meditation and offered a Zen tea ceremony before talking to the group of largely billionaires about how important it is that they, as individuals, resist being consumed by work at the expense of time with their families: “Time is not money,” he told them. “Time is life, time is love.”

Back at his Plum Village monastery, near Bordeaux, Thay says of his trip: “In all the visits, I told them they have to conduct business in such a way that happiness should be possible for everyone in the company. What is the use of having more money if you suffer more? They also should understand that if they have a good aspiration, they become happier because helping society to change gives life a meaning.”

The trip was just the beginning, he adds. “I think we planted a number of seeds and it will take time for the seeds to mature,” he says. “If they begin to practise mindfulness, they’ll experience joy, happiness, transformation, and they can fix for themselves another kind of aspiration. Fame and power and money cannot really bring true happiness compared to when you have a way of life that can take care of your body and your feelings.”

http://www.theguardian.com/sustainable-business/thich-nhat-hanh-mindfulness-google-tech (c) Guardian News & Media Ltd

Phone 0418 864 162 for information about Mindfulness in Business. Talking to groups is what I do best. A mindful business is happier, safer and more productive! Mindfully Yours with Love & Respect ~ John