The workplace presents unique challenges that are very different from the problems in our personal lives.

    - In our workplace, we often have to deal with strangers. Because we do not know them, we might misinterpret what they say. Furthermore, there is an unspoken rule of conduct about how we should behave with certain people in our workplace.
    - A workplace hierarchy exists with a structured set of rules and codes that influences our behavior.
    - Some of the emotions we deal with may be deemed inappropriate for the workplace.
    - We may work in a high-stress environment where we have to make decisions with severe consequences.

For example, certain types of behaviors and emotional responses towards a client are inappropriate and can cause employees emotional distress. We may have to sit stoically through an uncomfortable/unfair reprimand or restrain our disapproval of company decisions.
Many examples exist where we have to ‘keep our calm.’ Being able to implement mindfulness at the workplace can be the solution when facing these challenges.
Below we have provided a summary of tips and interventions for mindfulness at work:

Tip One: Use a metacognitive strategy
In situations that would typically provoke you, do the following three steps.

    ‘Step away’ mentally from the situation.
    Experience the situation.
    Do not evaluate the situation.

Specifically, try to ‘look in’ on your thoughts and feelings without reworking the narrative of the situation (e.g., “But he placed the wrong order” or “I’m trying my best without the support”). By adopting a meta-stance (Hülsheger et al., 2012), you can observe the situation without reacting to it.

Tip Two: Acknowledge your feelings
The above technique is also useful during periods of stress or panic, especially when a deadline is looming. Try to step away from yourself mentally and observe your feelings and thoughts.
The intention is to not react to the anxiety but to recognize it, acknowledge it, and to disengage from it. Try to avoid forming a cognitive narrative where you judge your feelings and behavior.

Tip Three: Mindful listening
Up to this point, both tips have been focused inwards by examining your thoughts and feelings. However, these techniques can also be focused outwards.
For example, when talking to a client or a colleague, try to listen to what they are saying in its entirety before beginning to formulate a response. Try to adopt the same meta-stance that you would have taken towards yourself and adjust it towards them. This might help you to respond to their messages in a non-reactive manner.

Tip Four: Mindfulness exercises
Continue to practice mindfulness exercises at your desk at various points during the day.

    Before beginning your workday, perform a one-minute mindfulness task at your desk. Set your cellphone timer to 1 minute, and spend that minute with your eyes closed, practicing a few mindfulness techniques, like breathing mindfully or reflecting on your thoughts.

    At various points during the day, you can implement a three-minute breathing exercise. Again, at your desk, set your cellphone timer to three minutes and practice deep exhalation and inhalation exercises.

    Other useful exercises include mindful walking, mindful eating, and a body scan (all of these exercises were described previously).

Tip Five: Avoid judgment
Ultimately, both tips 1 and 2 relate to awareness of your thoughts and feelings without judgment.
Awareness is not the same as stoicism – the intention is not to repress your feelings. You will experience feelings – in fact, you are human, and you must feel – but try to avoid the feedback loop that normally further encourages negative thinking.

Tip Six: Introduce a breathing exercise before a meeting
Up to this point, most of the tips have focussed on the role and experiences of the employee; however, there is no reason why everyone in a team should not practice a mindfulness exercise.
Compared to a control group and place group, there is some preliminary evidence that introducing a three-minute breathing exercise before a stand-up meeting (which is a typical daily meeting at the beginning of the day for most technology companies) results in better decision-making, more productive meetings, better listening, good interactions, and more appropriate emotional responses (den Heijer, Koole, & Stettina, 2017).

This exercise could be completed as a group or individually before the meeting.