....now bite into the raisin
How to be resilient and mindful at work
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It started with us choosing a raisin from the packet and holding it between our first finger and thumb. In complete silence all 14 of us had to examine it in detail. We were invited to notice everything about it from the way the skin was all wrinkled and slightly shiny in places and perhaps dull in others to how it felt when you pressed it together and then how it smelt. Then we were asked to close our eyes and place the raisin in our mouth. We had to roll it around on our tongue for a bit and then the next instruction was ‘Now bite into the raisin - how does it feel?’
If you follow us on Facebook, Twitter or Instagram you will have seen that we had a staff training day earlier this week. We try to do it once or twice a year to give ourselves a break, do some team building and gain some Continuing Professional Development hours if we can.
Mindfulness means paying attention
Yesterdays training day was held at the Practice in our Conference/Yoga room and was run by Kevin Simpson a Clinical Psychiatrist from Outlook SW. The course title was Resilience and Wellbeing at work and covered stress, how to recharge and refresh, sleep, being assertive, staying positive, values and goals and a short introduction to Mindfulness.
We spent the day discussing all sorts of issues that affected us all at work (and at home) and some of us found it reassuring to discover that we are not alone when it comes to not getting a good nights sleep or over worrying about things or wanting to achieve more. It was such a great opportunity to share experiences, values and goals and I think we all gained something from it.
The introduction to Mindfulness was thoroughly enjoyed by all bar one of us who can’t stand raisins but we all understood that it was more about paying attention in the present moment in a way that is conscious, curious and flexible (Kevin’s words not mine).
We were really lucky to have him come and talk to us as he is a very busy man and operates mainly in Cornwall, but as I head rapidly towards my 49th year (it’s my birthday on Saturday) I found everything that he talked about resonating with my life. The opportunity to take time out, acknowledge some of the issues that we have to deal with in this non-stop modern world of ours and then be given some really useful ways to slow down and cope with it all was just revelational.
Kevin suggested ways to bring Mindfulness into our everyday lives and if you fancy having a go (and as we are a Dental Practice!) perhaps you might like to try this one and let me know how you get on:
Be mindful brushing your teeth - it’ll take 4 minutes - 2 minutes on both top and bottom please says Ben:
Become mindful of the taste and texture of the toothpaste; mindful of the sensation of your feet on the bathroom floor; mindful of the way that your arm moves to direct the brush across your teeth and the sound of the brush against your teeth.
I’m going to blog more over the coming weeks about some of the other issues and how we can all become more resilient at work and in our lives generally. However, the moral of the story today is that if you bite into a raisin and it hurts then you probably need to come and see us sooner rather than later!
Have a good weekend and love life.