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Rita Davidson


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How Google employees cope with stress


Google unites innovators who passionately love their work. Hard work or failure does not frighten them, but push them to new heights. Such people are immersed in work with the head. In order not to let its employees burn out, the company brought out its recipe for getting rid of stress.

Google, as always, approached this matter creatively: to get rid of stress, employees use ancient eastern practices.
Search inside yourself

The author of the book "Look inside yourself" Chad-Meng Tan, Google engineer, stood at the very origins of the company. Once he noticed that it was difficult for him and his colleagues to "turn off the operating mode". Break away from work in the evening or on the weekends, take a break and simply refresh your thoughts was almost impossible. Google developed lightning fast, but Tan realized in time that stress and lack of rest would not help in work.

The person of Chad-Meng Tana is known to many of those who are interested in self-development. This person regularly teaches the simplest and most important basics, helps each day to achieve a state of calm, joy and happiness. Today, the Lifehacker publishes the universal rule of happiness created by this man.

Tang practiced meditation of mindfulness (meditation), during which the meditator focuses exclusively on breathing. In 2007, he wrote the book "Search within yourself" - a seven-week meditation course of mindfulness for Google employees. At first, colleagues were skeptical of his idea, but then noted that they became calmer, more focused, and by the end of the day the head remained clear.

Even the company's executives noticed that their employees have become healthier, happier and more productive. Appreciating the work of Tan, they offered him the post of head of the department of personal growth, so that he taught all the employees of Google meditation.

Subsequently, Chad-Meng Tan created the educational project Search Inside Yourself Leadership Institute (SIYLI). Within the framework of this project, Tang and 14 other like-minded people train awareness of the employees of different organizations.
Rest, to develop creativity

This advice is followed by Google employees. It turns out that meditation and rest not only help to get rid of stress but also increase creativity.

In 2001, Marcus Raichle, a professor of neurology at the University of Washington in St. Louis, performed functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) of the brain. He observed activity in certain areas of the brain if the subject was scattered or vital in the clouds. He called it the network of the passive mode of the brain.

Experiment Rihla inspired many scientists to study the brain in a state of rest. They came to the conclusion that it is a network of the passive mode of the brain that is often responsible for our creativity. This means that a brilliant idea will come to us more likely during a walk than in painful attempts to come up with something.

    A good idea will not come when you are loaded. A good idea will appear at the moment of rest. It will come when you take a shower. It will come when you draw or play cars with your son. When your mind is on the other side of the mind.
    Lin-Manuela Miranda, American composer, creator of the famous Broadway musical "Hamilton".

Let's make a diagram of the majority of creative discoveries. First, we plunge into the work, delving into the essence of the matter and thinking about solving the problem. Then there comes a deadlock when we can not move from the dead end, no matter how hard we try. At this point, you just need to stop. If we let the brain rest from exhausting thoughts, it will magically give us the right solution.

Do not confuse rest with laziness and inaction. This is an active process, during which a person grows both physically and psychologically.

Rational thinking, of course, will help in many situations. But sometimes you need to give free rein to your subconscious. It gives us information from those parts of the brain that are inaccessible when we think about something consciously. Neurologists write essay about our subconscious mind which works constantly. However, as Marcus Reichl found out, it will show true strength only in a state of rest.

Why does this work?

The same mechanism works, thanks to which we form habits. The habitual behavior is controlled by the basal ganglia, which also participate in the creation of memories and emotions. The more familiar the action we are performing, the easier it is to implement it and the less it is necessary to use the brain.

Exercise "flash of happiness" contains a trigger, routine and reward. These are the three components necessary to form a habit.

    The trigger is a pleasant moment.
    Routine is the fact that you notice this moment.
    A reward is a feeling of joy and happiness.

Exercise is also useful for those who practice meditation. It helps to get into the right state before starting practice. However, Chad believes that doing this exercise is in itself a meditation. In addition, first, we begin to notice the details around ourselves, then - to really see.

There is also scientific evidence supporting the idea of Chad. A small study conducted by psychologists at the University of Loyola showed that most people over 55 years old, capable of savoring pleasant moments, showed high satisfaction with life, regardless of their financial situation or state of health. Those who could not notice the small pleasures felt bad and any illness only made the mood worse.

This exercise should be worth learning right now. After all, the older we become, the more often we need to savor our life. In 2014, a study was conducted that showed: older people easily describe themselves by listing pleasant experiences from life. But young people tend to call only rare, "most-most" dates: graduating from the University, obtaining rights ... But the truth is that all these extraordinary moments seem incredible only to you. And they do not bring happiness. The number of happy days spent in pleasure, the number of good events - that's what really matters.
To sum up

  1.     Learn to notice and appreciate the slightest pleasure.
  2.     Feel how they bring you joy and happiness.
  3.     Repeat until a sense of joy is included in the daily habit.

Author Profile Picture
Rita Davidson

business coach

Read more from Rita Davidson

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