Dr Adrian Medhurst talks Performance and Wellbeing on the Potential Psychology Podcast

There is often such a push to meet the demands of a 'busy' life and the challenges of a job or workplace that people neglect to invest sufficiently and consistently in their wellbeing.

Although people can know the importance of wellbeing, this knowledge just isn't enough. Their action drops. They form 'bad' habits. Routines that once built and sustained wellbeing get replaced as every spare moment is used to squeeze out some more performance or tick off more 'to do list' items.

Although someone may feel like they're doing everything they can to cope with the difficulties they face, some of their coping strategies can be counterproductive (and others even downright risky or unhealthy). Replacing important moments to disconnect from work to rest in favour of sending more emails and ticking off more tasks is just one example. As is missing the opportunities for exercise or a healthy lunch break as you push to unrealistic goals or deadlines. Perhaps this sounds a little familiar?

When this sort of spiral continues and people stay tunnel visioned on the 'perform at all cost' focus, it can be some time (even years) before a person realises how far off track they've gone, and how unwell they have become.

This is all sounding a little 'doom and gloom', however, so it's important to point out that there are ways to break the cycle. People can bring back their awareness of important wellbeing building routines in life and work. When they do, and they make time to invest in their wellbeing, the spiral reverses. It heads upwards towards greater wellbeing. Over time as wellbeing is restored, and a new perspective on performance is realised. The person remembers that they fundamentally need wellbeing in order to be able to perform at their best and sustain this over time.

In this podcast we explore the 'Live Well, Have Impact' intention that sits at the heart of the above challenge. It drives us at Benny Button - like a mantra we use every day. When working with people and organisations this key message reveals how vital it is to be in sync when it comes to focusing on performance as well as wellbeing, and that work and life domains must also be in sync in order for everyone to realise their potential.

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Being Mindful when 'Busyness' is back

Most of us are coming out of what has hopefully been a restful and replenishing holiday season. But now it’s back to work and the resumption of the ‘norm’ where our modern lives and workplaces are busier than ever.

Before we know it demanding workloads and numerous responsibilities will be filling our calendars and to-do lists to the brink of bursting. The constant flow of information, email, and media competing for our attention at all hours of the day resumes. It’s not hard to see that we can become so busy being busy that we lose sight of what is most important to us, or even lose our sense of self and connection with others.

Our brains do their best to cope with these demands by setting habits of thinking, feeling, deciding and behaving that aim to help us handle our workloads and the high expectations we place on ourselves. It’s like having ‘default settings’ in our brains that guide us to navigate our daily experiences as if we are on autopilot mode.

We can all benefit from making time to slow down and tune into what’s important. We can reawaken our awareness and focus our attention on what matters - taking action mindfully. What’s more, we can practise doing this - even train this capability - because ‘busyness’ has become the default setting and our brains are switching into autopilot mode in an attempt to cope with the demand. This process is mindfulness, and it is something research shows us is incredibly valuable.

While the above context is serious stuff, we can have some fun learning ways to practice mindful awareness and building our attention skills. We can enjoy the process of firing, wiring, and rewiring our brains default settings and switching off our autopilot - all while experiencing novel and interesting experiences.

By understanding where our strengths and challenges are in the area of mindfulness we can make smarter decisions on where to focus and invest our effort and time to make progress in this work and life skill. 
Have you ever wondered how skilful are you are in applying ‘Mindful Action’ to your work and life? Have you ever wondered about the capability of your team and or organisation in this area? If you want to explore this and take you and your organisation to new peaks of your potential then get in contact with us at Benny Button!

The Crux of Human Resource Development

The Crux of Human Resource Development

What are the implications if 20% of your key performers are burning out and becoming depleted and disengaged?

Do you think it is more valuable to develop your high-performers by 5-10%, or invest in the middle 60% of your workforce?

If employees with greater wellbeing are more productive, are wellbeing interventions and practices 'nice to have' or essential?

'The Crux of Human Resource Development' is linked with the above questions.

8 tips to Live Well and Have Impact during the festive season

8 tips to Live Well and Have Impact during the festive season

A gift from our founders Troy Mansell and Adrian Medhurst

Christmas is a time for giving. It is also a helpful time to put on the oxygen mask. That is, look after yourself so you can be at your best. Which, as it turns out, helps you give your best to others. However, it’s quite likely your 2018 schedule has been overloaded with work and ‘life admin’. You either feel like you need a break, or feel like that is an understatement! Too often we see people return to work feeling lethargic, bloated, tense, and/or constipated! Yup. We went there… Now you’ll know that this is not the most effective way to return to the office in 2019. You want to return to work ready, (re)energised and in great shape to give your best performance.

2 before 2

2 before 2

Two litres of water before 2pm each day can help optimise hydration, boosting performance and productivity at work. It makes good sense, especially when over fifty percent of our body weight is made-up of water. Forgetting to drink water, air-conditioning and heat early in the day can cause dehydration which can lead to lethargy and tiredness and result in an unplanned trip to the coffee shop or vending machine in the afternoon!

Mindfulness practice is a nutritious diet for the mind

Our brains are hungry. From one moment to the next, our appetite for thinking can be insatiable. It seems as if our mind is always on the lookout for something to consume and chew on. But we can’t so much blame our mind. After all, our past has primed us to scan our environment for relevant cues and information we can use to get ahead and survive. But that was at times when our environment was far simpler than it is today. These days, there is an abundance of stimulus all around us or available to use on demand, in any moment of the day or night. 

Finding our inner stillness

A portrait exhibited in the Archibald exhibition at the Art Gallery of NSW recently inspired me. The work is titled ‘The inner stillness of Eileen Kramer’ by Andrew Lloyd Greensmith. 

Eileen Kramer is 102 years old and as the description of the painting pointed out, “she personifies the key to longevity and a full, rich life.” She is currently the worlds oldest working dancer/choreographer as well as a poet, artist and costume designer. She has been travelling the world living in places such as India, Paris, London and New York and recently returned to Australia, aged 99. 

Overthinking and the value of Stillness, Stability & Sensitivity

Does more practice thinking = better thinking? Or, is it not that simple. Does it depend on one thing or another? Is there a law of diminishing return? And, are there alternatives to 'more thinking' that can lead to great levels of insight, learning, understanding, growth, and progress? I think there are...

Energy drinks - what really happens to our body

Whether it's overpowering the 3pm slump, or mixing with a few drinks to make the party last longer, energy drinks are bound to have been a feature for all of us at some point – whether occasionally or on a regular/daily basis. We all know there are many healthier options to improve our energy, but there are times when a quick fix seems the only answer. Hopefully, after you read on, you will think twice about your afternoon pick-me-up habit...

How Benny helps organisations and their employees Live Well and Have Impact!

Two people with one purpose were magically brought together on a cold winter’s morning in Melbourne’s Flinders Lane. Benny Button’s co-founders, Dr Adrian Medhurst and Troy Mansell were in their own unique worlds' beginning another day exploring how they could have a positive impact on people’s lives. However one particular issue was bothering them...

Green Light for Hemp Foods

The future of human nutrition just upped the ante with a brand new superfood now in the final stages of legislation. Hemp in it’s various forms from seeds, to oils and powdered proteins are currently consumed in every country outside of Australia and New Zealand. We are now officially joining the party down under.

But, don’t get the wrong idea; it’s not that kind of party.

5 hacks to overcome the 3pm slump - that don't include sugar!

With Benny Button's movement expert Rosie Dumbrell

We all know that 3pm feeling and Fridays can tend to be the hardest, as we push to the finish line of the working week. So here are 5 healthy tips to get you through that slump.