Engage Mindfulness

I stand in front of an historic Boston three-story brownstone with an ornately carved front door and a polished brass lion-head door knocker. I have absolutely no idea who I am meeting and what his relationship is with the Sales Guru. Have I been sent on a wild goose chase by an old guy with wild white hair?

* * * *

I am startled when a distinguished tall, middle-aged man enters the room. He has chiseled facial features and a shock of styled silver hair. He is casually, but expensively dressed in grey slacks, burgundy turtleneck and brown suede jacket. He shakes my hand, introduces himself as Cory Stuart and sits down in the chair opposite me.

* * * *

“What is this all about? Where is this all leading?”

Eventually, I ask, “Cory, who are you? What do you do? What is this all about? Why was I sent here?”

“I’m a mindfulness trainer,” he calmly responds. “Are you familiar with mindfulness?”

Mindfulness trainer?  I ask myself. What does this have to do with sales skills?

* * * *

“Today, business leaders, ranging from boards of directors down to all levels of workers in companies from General Mills to Google are engaged in mindfulness training. So are court judges, all ranks of military personnel, law enforcement detectives, hospital doctors and staff, and companies under fire from the public. They want to learn how to be non-judgmental, how to be fully present in the present moment. They want to pay attention ‘on purpose.’”

* * * *

Mindfulness enables you to tune in to what resonates with others. It starts with self-awareness, with learning how to turn off your limiting habit energy which developed over the years, in order to better perceive what is going on in the moment. Whether it’s an interview, sales presentation, conference, meeting, sales pitch—or even a date.”

“What do you mean, ‘limiting habit energy’?”

“Your quick, knee-jerk response based on years of acquiring and harboring ingrained and reactive habits.”

“So, how is mindfulness used?”

Perceptions tend to be erroneous.

“A mindful approach requires less energy and is more accurate, rewarding, and effective than a mindless one.

“We spend too much time thinking mindlessly and mentally multitasking. As a result of today’s technology our workday is endless. We work everywhere—in the office, while traveling, at home, and on vacation. We work 24/7 with no beginning or end to the work week.”

* * * *

We are a civilization on speed. Speeding on computers, iPhones, Blackberries, iPods, iPads, broadband cards and being digitally connected. The digital world is on fire but doesn’t know it. People are burning up from information overload.”

I shake my head, “I am reluctant to agree.”

“We are so addicted to gadgets and mechanisms we don’t bother to think anymore.” Cory continued, “We push a button that tells us what to do and how to do it. We push a button to spell check and grammar-check. Yet, there’s no button to spell-check and grammar-check speech. We can’t be effective racing to be efficient by multitasking, and burning the candle at both ends. The enemy of mindfulness and innovation is speed.

“Studies have shown that runaway multitasking leads to a loss of effectiveness.  The loss of effectiveness can be as high as 30 or 40%.”

Much of the world is on speed.

* * * *

Cultivate the abilities to see clearly and to be more objective.

* * * *

How and where do I begin?” I ask eager to learn.

“Today, I can only provide you with starters and point you in the right direction.

* * * *

“What’s the possibility of me working with you?”

Cory looks me over and responds, “Who knows, maybe we will end up doing that. First, there are more steps for you to go through before anything can be determined.”

* * * *

He hands me a sheet of paper, says “She’s expecting you this afternoon” smiles, firmly shakes my hand and leaves me sitting in the room,….

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Copyright© June 2010 by Larry Blumsack