I invite you to stop for a moment.
Feel your feet touching the ground.
Feel your buttocks resting on your chair.
Feel your arms resting on your lap or the armrests.
Now feel your inbreath and your outbreath.
Yes, right now. Your inbreath and your outbreath.
Say to yourself, ‘this is my inbreath’ and ‘this is my outbreath’.
‘My inbreath, my outbreath’.
Feel the beginning of your inbreath to the end of your inbreath.
Feel the beginning of your outbreath to the end of your outbreath.
The beginning to the end.
Can you feel this wave motion of your belly and chest? Going up and down.
Inbreath, your belly expands. Outbreath, your belly and chest fall.
How do you feel right now?
In the now, where the roots of our future lie
By the delusion of the day, we chase our ideas and plans. It is so easy to get overwhelmed by our action lists and problems. When we live at a fast pace, we easily get carried away with short-term thinking. When we breathe and feel we are breathing, we are connected to the now, where the roots of our future lie.
Hear your inner wisdom again
By feeling your body and breathing, you can just be, listen in, hear your inner wisdom again, feel your humanity, see your beauty. Feel how small you are in the bigger picture. Then you can reflect: what is the bigger picture? What is my purpose? What is our common purpose?
Increase happiness and reduce suffering
The point is that we all want to increase our happiness and reduce our suffering. Not only us, but also our colleagues, customers, suppliers, managers, friends and family members. That is what all people want and strive for. So what makes you happy? What gives you deep fulfillment? What is it that you most want in your life?
Listen to your suffering and remove the root
In silence, as we breathe, we can hear and feel our happiness and our suffering. What thoughts and patterns are causing us to suffer? What is the root of our suffering and how can we remove that root? Suffering is simply part of life. By not pushing away our suffering and pain, but exploring it and alleviating it, we can grow our happiness. “No mud, no Lotus” (Thich Nhat Hanh). Meaning: without mud, the beautiful Lotus flower could not grow.
After you have consciously breathed and listened to yourself, you are ready to listen to others. You can see their beauty, the person behind the words and actions, their ideas, their desires, the suffering they are trying to minimize. What is it that they most want in their lifes? What gives them happiness? What makes them suffer? Let’s ask them. And how can you support their path to fulfillment and help them minimize their suffering? That’s compassion. That is part of compassionate leadership and human-centred leadership. Being able to be with yourself, breathing in silence and listening inwardly and to others nourish your human-centered leadership and compassionate leadership style.
By the way, everyone leads. We all lead by example.
For example, how do you want to appear in your next meeting? Take a few moments to check in with everyone. A word from everyone that reflects “where they are,” how they are doing or how they are feeling at the moment. A word they want to share. Connect and make sure they feel heard. When discussions in the office or at home get heated, feel your breath again, just for a few times, in and out. This is something we need to practice regularly. If not, we easily fall back into unhealthy patterns, haste and irritation.
Relax and build
When you are connected to the now, you can build meaningful connections and rebuild your future. Good ideas arise when you are relaxed and connected to the now. Innovations happen when you make time to stop, think and reflect. Take time for yourself and others. It will change the world for the better.