The Power of Mindfulness: Techniques for a Calm and Focused Mind

Person practicing mindfulness in sunset

Do you so often find yourself burning the candle at both ends trying to start up and grow your business? You might be pushing on regardless, sleep-deprived and your mind racing, thinking: “If I work tirelessly now, I’ll reap the rewards later, right?”

And while it’s true that hard work does pay off, you also need to be making sure that your mind is in a calm and focused place for you to do your best work. And I truly believe that as entrepreneurs, we should absolutely prioritise ourselves and our personal success above all else if we want to make our best decisions.

Picture this: a calmer mind, better decisions, and success that radiates not just in your personal life but spills over into your professional ventures. 

If this is what you’d really love to achieve, then today I’m going to share with you my favourite techniques for helping you weave mindfulness into your daily routine. The good news is that they’re all super simple but so positively impactful.

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1. Kickstart Your Day with the Power of Journaling

The journey towards a calm and focused mind starts with your own thoughts, which is why I love the act of journaling as a ritual and daily habit.

You don’t have to be a writer to do this. Your journal is for your eyes only, and a place where you can express yourself exactly as you want to. At the start of your day, when you can find just 10 or 15 minutes to yourself, sit down quietly and explore any thoughts that come up in your mind. Think of this as a private little conversation with yourself, free of judgement. All you’re doing is exploring ideas, letting your mind flow and writing down what comes to you.

This is a perfect time to reflect on your goals and think about your next actions. What are you feeling good about? What’s bothering you right now? This is ultimately so much more than just jotting down thoughts. What you’re actually doing is creating a short, manageable ritual that sparks clarity and sets the tone for a successful day and this will serve you so well long-term.

Don’t just take my word for it – even Richard Branson finds the time to journal and understands the value of keeping one. As he once said: “My most essential possession is a standard-sized school notebook.”

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2. Manage your Stress with Mindful Breathing

We know all too well that entrepreneurial life comes with its fair share of stress. Instead of letting it boss you around, it’s time to take charge in a way that’s so simple and can be done at any time, anywhere.

The next time you find yourself feeling a bit stressed or overwhelmed, know that those feelings are true. Your body is working overtime and is trying to let you know about it, whether that’s the racing thoughts, rapid heartbeat or quick breaths. In those moments, you’re not primed to perform your best. Instead, you’re in ‘fight or flight’ mode and that makes it pretty difficult to think rationally.

If you notice yourself getting tense, close your eyes and just breathe. Concentrate for a few minutes on breathing that little bit slower and more calmly, and allow your body to settle with you. This essentially helps you hit the reset button on your nervous system and will have you operating from a more calm and grounded place, rather than reacting impulsively.

The more you can calm your mind, the more clearly you’ll be able to think through your decisions and lead your business towards the success you really want.

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3. Embrace Your Imperfect Moments

Here’s one I really wish I’d learned earlier: you don’t always have to be at the top of your game, even as a busy and ambitious entrepreneur. Life happens and we’re only human – learn to embrace it and work with it rather than beating yourself up.

Showing yourself compassion and recognising when you’re not at your best is so key. Let’s say, for example, someone comes in and they need to talk to you right now. Or perhaps you’re coming up to a scheduled meeting and you recognise that for whatever reason, your mind is just in another place. 

It is so perfectly okay for you to say, “Hey, can we reschedule/postpone for now?” You could postpone for just ten minutes to get more present if you need to, practising the breathing exercise I talked about earlier. 

For me as an entrepreneur, I thought I always needed to be on call and constantly on the go, but only ended up getting caught off-guard so many times. And I made many mistakes as a result. If I’d only taken the time I needed when I needed it, then what a world of difference that could have made.

Recognising when you’re out of sorts and giving yourself the time you need to recentre isn’t a sign weakness. It’s self-awareness. Remember, no one expects you to be a superhero all the time. 

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4. Harness the Power of Positive Incantations

Jeff Weiner (CEO of Linkedin), Arianna Huffington (founder of Huffington Post) and Marc Benioff (CEO of Salesforce) all have one thing in common – they all practice meditation.

Meditation apps like Calm and Headspace are booming, with more and more people recognising the importance of meditation in their daily lives. But you don’t have to go somewhere and meditate for hours or days on end – in fact, 47% of people meditate for 30 minutes or less, while 41% practice for 15 minutes or less (but still reap the benefits).

Our minds, like our bodies, are something that we can train. By meditating, we can actually train our minds to feel better, and that in itself is so empowering. 

Next time you’re out walking or driving somewhere, or even just having your morning coffee, try listening to some really positive, upbeat music that has you feeling good. And in this moment, tell yourself, “I’m feeling great!” I want you to really feel that in your body – say it aloud if it helps.

This is what we call an incantation. When we do this and really feel those good feelings, then express them in our own words, they almost ripple through our bodies and have us feeling totally primed for the day ahead.

You can always then take this a step further if it comes to a big meeting or a talk. You’ll already have associated that strong positive feeling with the music you were listening to. And so you can put that same positive music on. This time, think back to all those times when people thought you did so well. 

Can’t remember any right now? Even if you can’t think of those memories, you can imagine them. Your mind doesn’t need to know the difference between what really happened and what you’re imagining.

Visualisation and incantations aren’t just for Olympic athletes or the spiritually enlightened. Practising meditation is a huge factor in the daily lives of so many successful entrepreneurs too – including you. 

In Conclusion…

The journey to a calm and focused mind is a personal one, and it really doesn’t need to be complicated to serve you. The impact on your personal and professional life will be so noticeable once you start weaving these simple little rituals into your day.

Investing in yourself is the first step to growing a thriving and sustainable business. The more you prioritise your own wellbeing, the more you’ll elevate your decision-making, performance and overall success.

Embrace the power of mindfulness and make time for you – then watch your personal and professional life transform. I really hope these tips have helped you today and I’d love to know how you get on, so please drop me a comment or message on Instagram and let me know. I’d really welcome hearing about what’s working so well for you.