focus

One great technique to help you meditate your way to the top

One great technique to help you meditate your way to the top.png

I don't think I would have landed, or lasted in, a CEO role if I didn't meditate.  In fact, I know I wouldn't have. Between board responsibilities, ambitious growth targets, staffing, reputation management, AGMs, Awards and audits, life had the potential to be incredibly stressful. 

Meditation kept me clear headed, less reactive and better able to manage the constantly changing demands. 

What’s interesting though, is that I used to hide my meditation and yoga. I was embarrassed that people would think it was light weight and not leaderly enough, not cool or career minded enough, and that I was lacking in some way. 

Spring forward a few years and times have sure changed!  Meditation and mindfulness is considered the new black. It’s not just good for you but it’s uber cool as well.

If Jeff Weiner, CEO, LinkedIn, Ariana Huffington, CEO, Huffington Post and Oprah Winfrey, CEO, The Modern World (LOL) can do it, so can the rest of us. 

Multiple research studies have shown that meditation has the potential to decrease anxiety, thereby potentially boosting resilience and performance under pressure.

It has also been shown to

In the attention economy, focus is the currency. Fight for your focus
— Repa Patel
  • reduce stress

  • boost immunity

  • increase concentration and focus

  • improve sleep quality

  • help you make better decisions

  • increase memory and

  • enhance creativity

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....... all of which are highly beneficial to leadership.

Let's nip scarcity mentality in the bud 
It doesn’t have to be complicated or perfect. Tiny two minute meditation moments several times a day are not to be sniffed at. After all, the meditation that you do is far better than the meditation that you think about and don't do.

An abundance meditation is my go to at the moment. Designed to nip scarcity mentality in the bud in a few minutes. Literally. And scarcity mentality is not only one of the biggest barriers to women in leadership, but also to you and your own success.

  • "There won't be enough top jobs to go around"

  • "There won't be enough opportunities for us all"

  • "I'm not good enough"

  • "I'm not confident enough"

  • "There are only a few places so why would they give one to me?"

You've probably heard one of the above. You may have even said something similar to yourself.

The abundance meditation is really simple. When I do it I feel stress melting from my body - like ice-cream on a hot summer day (she pined wistfully). 

It’s great for those days when you have a bucket load of competing priorities, then worry that you won’t have enough time, energy or focus to get there.  

Deep down too, you’re afraid because the person you’ll let down the most is yourself and maybe .... today is the day that others will find out you're a big ol' fraud.

So what do you do?  Instructions below

  • Close your eyes and focus on your breathing. You can be sitting or lying. Rule of thumb - if you accidentally fall asleep, you probably needed it. Don’t get too pedantic.

  • Start breathing and allow your diaphragm to gently expand into your belly as you breathe

  • With a light touch, count how many counts it takes to inhale, pause at the top then count how long it takes to exhale

  • Repeat for about 1 minute and see if you can effortlessly extend your breath count each time

  • Then mentally repeat the following four phrases to yourself with your new slow breathing - about four times through

- "I am safe"

- "I am worthy" 

- "I am loveable"

- "I am enough" 

  • Remember you are not in a rush, take your time

  • If you have the time, or want a variation on a theme, take it one step further and repeat the following different four phrases for a couple of minutes

- "I have plenty of time"

- "I have plenty of energy"

- "I have plenty of focus"

- "I am enough" 

  • Finally, sit in silence for a minute longer and gently bask in the space this creates.

Then get on with your day!  

Remember, some days it's a dance. Other days it’s a juggle. While some days it feels like a tornado hit!

You being able to carve a calm pathway through is going to make all the difference between an indifferent or invincible 'brand you'. 

Let me know how you go. 

And yes, it is possible to meditate your way to the top.

Share if you dare, to inspire another woman somewhere!

#executivewomen #leadingwomen #LookOutCSuiteHereSheComes

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Feel like your leadership journey has stalled? Email ablesing@amandablesing.com to set up a 30 min one on one to learn more. Helping clients shift from feeling invisible to becoming invincible in just 12 months

How to get more done with less

You know when you have a looming deadline but everyone is pulling you from pillar to post? 

ARGH!!!  😫

Or when you spend so much time in meetings that you secretly wonder “when will I ever get my work done?” 

Combine that with open plan offices and sneaking time on LinkedIn and you have a recipe for disaster for your productivity.

Which leaves some wondering if creating a career that really counts is all it’s cracked up to be!

10 Productivity Hacks to Help you Focus

  1. Turn off your phone notifications during the day

  2. Tackle the hardest stuff first

  3. Set up an "email response time"... and stick to it

  4. Pomodoro technique

  5. Take proper breaks

  6. Get enough sleep

  7. Don't multitask

  8. Set yourself some mini goals during the day

  9. Get competitive

  10. Make a good old fashioned list

>> READ MORE  - I was interviewed by Claire Isaac on TEN DAILY and here is her article


Feel like your leadership journey has stalled? Email ablesing@amandablesing.com to set up a 30 min one on one to learn more. Helping clients shift from feeling invisible to becoming invincible in just 12 months

10 Awesome Reasons for Hiring a Mentor

No longer are professional career mentors just for the elite. In fact it’s actually considered a great strategy for anyone, especially for those wanting to get ahead much faster. It's a bit like a personal trainer but for your work fitness - consistency, accountability and with an end goal. In fact, in the gender diversity space mentors for women are part of a recommended strategy to help keep women focused on career progression, “leaning in” and leadership pipelines.

Sick of reading? Check it out on YouTube

In order to find a mentor, you could ask a senior person in your circle of influence to mentor you for free. Or in the absence of a senior person, you could pay for a mentor. Why not consider a combination of the both? And one of the big benefits of the paid mentor over a free mentor is that the paid mentor’s first priority is you.

So to help you make your mind up about whether or not Ambition Revolution mentoring is for you here are my top 10 reasons why you could and should have a mentor. 

1. You’ll end up working on a program tailored to suit your exact requirements. Your program will be a combination of practical, tactical and strategic – blending long term goals with short term strategies and vice versa.

2. You have someone to hold you accountable, to check up on you and give you a nudge when you need.

3. You have someone to bounce ideas off - who doesn’t have a vested interest in anything other than your results. Plus they won't mind if your ideas are wobbly or only half formed. You get to try out all your worst ideas outside of the office in a safe environment. Your executive team will simply get to see the finished product.

4. You get someone to keep you motivated and get you through dips and slumps, keeping you focused on the end game and reminding you how far you’ve come so far.

5. You have someone to keep you confident and feeling self assured. Did you know that when it comes to success, confidence correlates at least as closely to confidence as competence? 

Evidence shows that women are less self-assured than men—and that to succeed, confidence matters as much as competence.
— Katty Kay & Claire Shipman

Want to know more about that? Read Katty Kay and Claire Shipman’s telling article in the Atlantic The Confidence Gap

6. Your commitment is only one hour per fortnight – with tactical, specific homework on your career strategy between sessions (not some random case study).

7. You’ll have someone to help you focus. As you’ve probably heard about with recent research into the flow state – there is an amazing correlation between flow, focus and results and a quite telling inverse correlation between focus and effort. So here’s the thing. When focus increases? Perceived effort seems to fall. You find yourself in the zone and work becomes more meaningful and you become happier. Want to learn more about flow? Check out Mihaly Csikszentmihalyi’s TED talk

8. Wisdom and guidance from someone who has been there or at the very least has other clients working through the same issues.

9. You’ll feel like you are growing and developing even though the focus is on your work. Work on your career will have never felt so much like fun!

10. You'll feel like you have more time left in your week to focus on all the other things that are also important - friends, family and wellness.  We've all heard that old maxim that when we are lying on our death bed we're not going to say "I wish I spent more time at the office".

Curious? I've been having fun again with technology. Check out my latest video on the benefits of mentoring!

Vive la révolution! Ambition Revolution! 
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  • I am the creator of The Ambition Revolution – the science and art of amping smart and savvy.

  • I mentor ambitious professionals to ensure they remain strategic, agile and focused on the bigger game.

  • I also with organisations who are trying to increase the profile of women in leadership, but struggling to do so.

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Feel like your leadership journey has stalled? Email ablesing@amandablesing.com to set up a 30 min one on one to learn more. Helping clients shift from feeling invisible to becoming invincible in just 12 months