Team Building, as you likely know, is the skill of uniting a team behind a common goal, and meditation can help you do exactly that.
As is explained by the University of California: Berkeley in their Human Resources Guide, in a cohesive team “Team members not only share expectations for accomplishing group tasks, but trust and support one another and respect one another’s individual differences.” As such, good team building activities are largely about cultivating positive emotional and relational qualities between employees.
It’s a highly psychological thing. Indeed, Woodcock (1979) states that “Trust, openness, honesty, cooperation… are the norm [of a successful team]”. Note how these are all psychological factors. No surprise then, that the best activities focus on the psychological.
In Steps To Building An Effective Team (2016, Haas & Mortensen states that the keys to team building are:
- Clear communication
- Trust and accountability
- Adaptability and flexibility
- Emotional intelligence
- Active listening
- Conflict resolution
- Goal alignment
- Empowerment and autonomy
So why does meditation help?
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Benefits of meditation for Team Building
Meditation is the technique of focusing the mind on one object at a time. This “object” could be a physical object (such as a candle), an aspect of ourselves (such as the breath or the body), a sound, or other object. There are may different forms of meditation, such as breathing meditations, mantras, and methods such as Loving Kindness. Ultimately, it is a psychological intervention and, importantly, it is an evidence-based activity.
Here’s how meditation can enhance your team.
For starters, it enhances communication. Communication is the verbal expression of thoughts, and meditation clarifies thoughts. Meditation calms the mind and enhances cognitive processes, which results in more coherent thinking. Naturally, this in turn enhances communication.
It also boosts emotional intelligence. Research shows that certain meditation techniques can have a significant effect on EQ. For instance, the meditation technique called Vipassana (one of the methods we teach here at The Daily Meditation) raises emotional awareness while simultaneously enhancing emotional control.
Compassion truly is at the heart of a good team. Compassionate team members are more likely to listen to one another, to support one another, and ultimately, to work productively together. Meditation raises compassion according to the journal Frontiers in Human Neuroscience, which you can read about on the National Institute of Health. This is especially true for specific types of meditation, such as Loving Kindness and Karuna, which again, are methods we teach here at The Daily Meditation.
Team Building Meditation Script
- Get members of the team to sit or stand together in a circle.
- Each member should make sure that they are sitting or standing with good posture, with their feet firmly planted on the ground at shoulder-width apart, and with a straight but relaxed spine.
- Members close their eyes and take a moment to be mindfully aware of their bodies.
- Now the team members focus on the sensation of the breath moving through the space just between the middle of the nose. The goal is simple observation of the breath. During this time, team members should let their thoughts simply come and go as they will, not fighting thoughts nor clinging to them, as they continue to observe the breath.
- Members begin to chant the sound Om (pronounced “Aum”). They should focus on the choral sound of the Aum and focus entirely on this sound. For the next five to ten minutes, the group members aim to create one universal sound, such that the volume and pitch of “Aums” is the same for each member of the group. This continues for five to ten minutes.
- Members gradually reduce the sound, aiming to decrease the sound as one, so each member gets quieter at the same rate as the group.
This technique is very effective for communication skills, oneness, and active listening.
Meditation is an evidence-based team building activity and we here at THE DAILY MEDITATION have seen excellent results from our corporate sessions.
Of course, this is only one of the many benefits of meditation for the workplace.
Whether it’s by improving employee wellbeing by introducing meditation at work, or increasing productivity levels by increasing focus, meditation is unquestionably one of the best types of corporate wellness programs.
What To Do Next
Do you want your team to work harmoniously as one and to boost their productivity levels? Then you should definitely book a corporate meditation class with us.
Our classes are custom-built to enhance team building and to resolve conflicts. And we know from feedback that our classes produce impressive results. Contact us today and together we can make your team the best it has ever been.
Paul Harrison BSc is a qualified meditation teacher who believes in genuine, authentic meditation. He has more than 15 years experience in teaching meditation and mindfulness both to individuals and to corporations and is the author of four books on meditation. He has been featured in Psychology Today, Breathe Magazine, Healthline, Psych Central and Lion’s Roar.
Paul studied meditation in beautiful Oxford, UK, and Hamilton Ontario Canada, and earned his degree at Staffordshire University.
Paul’s biggest inspirations include Thich Nhat Hanh, Jon Kabat Zinn, and Jack Kornfield.
“My goal is to provide the most authentic meditation sessions so you can harness the power of your own mind for personal transformation” – Paul Harrison