You are not being “Fully Present”.
Is there any doubt in your mind that the little kitty in the picture is TOTALLY focused on the task at hand? What do you think the odds are that the task will be accomplished?
Buddha taught to a man asking this question: “What are the teachings of you and your disciples”? He answered: ”We walk, sit and eat. The man who asked the questioned was confused: “But so do I”, he said. The Buddha answered him: “Yes, but when we walk, we know that we walk, and when we sit we know that we sit, and when we eat we know that we eat”
This is to be fully present – the concept of mindfulness. (Quotes and text from “Being In Mindfulness.com”)
Mindfulness is the art of living right in the center between future and past – in the present. It is today. It is you, it is the other person, it is focus. It is paying attention to and showing 100% interest in the other person, the task at hand, the job for which you are being paid. It is NOW and HERE.
It is when body and mind are synchronized. It is when you are giving 100% attention. It is the caller on the other end of the phone. It is solving THEIR problem, not thinking about yours. It is the customer’s experience, not yours, that is at the top of the list.
Being “fully present” is focusing on work when you are working, focusing on another person when they are speaking, and focusing on your relaxation when it is time to do so.
If you are operating a table saw, would you be watching a movie at the same time? Hopefully not. The consequences of not being focused on your actions could be devastating and irreversible.
When you are working, can you be paying attention to other things including thoughts about non-work activities? We do. All the time. The consequences can be far away. The payoffs to focus may be only incremental in the short run, so what the heck? The downside to all that is the accumulation of daily deficits mount quickly, and because you are NOT paying full attention to that, it can be lost.
When we are hired to do a job, we are hired with the hopes that we will spend 100% of our time on the job, focused on the job, paying attention to detail, thinking, feeling, and giving 100% of our previous experiences to the tasks at hand, and to the future. We are given goals in the hopes that we will in fact do everything in our power to hit and exceed those goals. How can we do that when our attention is elsewhere? How can we do that when we are thinking about something other than the task at hand?
The same applies to an interview: Many people do NOT focus on the task at hand: convincing the other person YOU have the skills to solve their problems. Too many times, the interviewee goes “through the motions”, the result being that the interviewer wonders WHERE the person actually was for the last hour. Your result is that you don’t get hired.
From Mindfullness.com: “Mindfulness is about focusing our thinking to the actions that we do. We have to plan ahead and take responsibility for our own future. But what happens if this becomes our constant state of living? Then we are living in the thoughts and not in our present actions.
Your career is, just as an interview, a sum of your actions, not your intentions. If you are NOT fully present in your career or your interview, the sum of those actions will not be enough to get you what you want or need. They may no longer be enough to get you by, not in today’s competitive world.
Be fully present and focused on what you are doing. Do it well, to the absolute best of your abilities. The rewards will be deep, predictable and fulfilling.
Have you ever met a person whom when talking to you, you are absolutely convinced that you are THE ONLY person in the room? Be THAT person in everything you do.