Ellen Langer has been researching mindfulness for over 35 years, long before it was a buzzword in business meetings across the globe. Ironically she began studying the antithesis, mindlessness, and believes we are all, always either mindful or mindless. She doesn’t promote the use of a specific meditation ‘technique’ or of a practice we ‘should’ dedicate 3o minutes per day to, rather hers is a way of seeing that challenges perceptions and reminds us that we will always find answers to the questions we ask. A phenomenological version of Parkinson’s Law, if you will….
For example, if we change ‘Can I…?’ to ‘How can I…?’ our entire life experience transforms. Give it a go!
She suggests that with each situation and every person we encounter we ask ourselves, what have I never noticed about this/him/her before? By scanning for new information we naturally stay mindful and engaged in the world around us.
Below is a 5 minute interview with the Harvard Business Review where she talks about how to enliven our work with mindfulness.