April 102nd 2021, 11:46:45 AM
Sitting down to write this newsletter, two things strike me.
How different things feel compared to our last newsletter.
The sun is shining in London and the temperature is rising.
We are starting to come out of lockdown. It could just be me, but the general mood seems to be lightening. The intensity of seriousness and anxiety seems to be dispersing.
At the same time, we are seeing our work with organisations shifting. Before the pandemic, we were highlighting the central role of state of mind in business performance and operations. A key overlooked factor that professionals were not paying attention to. Well-being was always an added bonus of having a clearer mind. However, it was not an important outcome in itself. Lately, well-being has been a primary concern of organisations we are talking to and working with. Leaders are thinking about it, noticing that their team members lack it. Stress, insecurity and other mental burdens that were previously overlooked, or seen as the normal cost of going to work, now seem to be seen as a problem that organisations are looking to deal with. Organisations are starting to think about state of mind as important.
As an organisation founded to highlight the importance of clarity of mind and well-being, this is an interesting shift to observe. We have been working to raise awareness that the normal adult state of mind is not a clear or healthy one and that, with a little understanding and no extra work, it could be. The potential for our normal state of mind being a clear one is easier than most of us think and the ripples are profound. It has been encouraging to see the lack of well-being in organisations become a live and relevant issue. The rising awareness around the importance of well-being and lack of it is encouraging. However, we still see a vital missing piece. It is still not common knowledge that well-being is not tied to our circumstances and that it is a natural quality of a less burdened mind, and so, is available to us all. As a result, it is not widely known what is possible for our well-being and how simple it can be. The goal and vision for well-being are unnecessarily low. It seems like a really key moment to highlight what we have seen about the potential for high levels of well-being in any circumstance without working at it.
It is like we have been talking to a person who is trying to read the paper and we have been telling them they are not wearing their glasses. They often ignore us because they have no idea what glasses are or what difference they make. Now they know that they do not have glasses on and they want to find some glasses that will allow them to read better. They are frantically looking everywhere and talking to all sorts of people about where to find glasses. We are trying to tell them that they are on their head, waiting to be used.
Our focus is the same, but the conversation has moved on from clarity of mind to well-being and mental health. The answer is the same: a better understanding of the mind as Sydney Banks pointed to it. When all is said and done, we are doing the same thing: pointing to the often-overlooked truths about our experience of the mind through thought and the challenges and potential this gives us. The conversation is moving on, but there are still vital pieces that are missing for many people. Luckily there are lots of ways for them to see how easy it could be.
Dr Aaron Turner PhD