You do deep breathing exercises in the toilet. You blast meditative music through your noise cancelling earphones. You chant mantras under your breath as you rush to another unnecessary meeting.
Feel like your job is getting in the way of zen? The chaos of an open office has us chasing inner peace more than ever, yet it is the least conducive place to find some. But we’ve got ideas on how you can carve out time and space to sneak in uninterrupted downtime.
In an office lobby, people are less likely to question why you’re sitting around doing nothing. To avoid nosy colleagues, go to the next door building’s lobby. Plug in your earphones and use apps like Headspace or Calm to guide you through a short session.
*If you drive, hop in your car instead.
Have a zen lunchbox
When eating alone, don’t look to your phone or laptop for company. Many of us are used to picking up our phone to avoid awkward eye contact with strangers, but this only leads to excessive screen-time, disrupting our sleep and more.
When was the last time you fully appreciated the taste, smell, and texture of your food? Try grabbing something nutritious and put 15 minutes of pure gastronomical joy in your workday.
Become a serial slow stroller
Set an alarm for every two hours. When it goes off, stop working, get up, and do a walking meditation. Head for the toilet, or get out of the building, anything goes. It’s also a good way to rest your eyes and avoid sitting for too long.
Know the OM code
I read an article that prescribed ‘red dot meditation’. This meant sticking little red dots on the walls in your building, and using each one as a visual reminder to stop and meditate.
In other words, this is your chance to vandalise office posters with smiley faces. Or if you like to stay under the radar, you can simply assign these reminders to fixed objects around the office.
The Float Crew