This isn’t an article about leaning in or speaking up. It turns out that the number one career tip many successful women practice is just taking the time to chill out. Women are three times more likely to have an anxiety disorder than men, according to stress.org. Not only does stress greatly negatively affect one’s health, it also affects one’s productivity. That’s why more and more people are turning toward transcendental meditation, resting your attention on a short mantra that helps you find your “inner silence.”
“There’s a hypothesis that deep in your mind is a place that is still,” says Bob Roth, the executive director of the David Lynch Foundation, a non-profit that teaches transcendental meditation to lower-income people and at-risk youth. Four very successful career women recently shared how transcendental meditation has changed their lives at a recent David Lynch Foundation fundraiser. We share the highlights here.
How to do it:
Find a teacher at tm.orgwho will help you craft your mantra.
Focus on your mantra for 20 minutes, twice a day.
Arianna Huffington, President and Editor-in-Chief of Huffington Post Media
In 2007, Arianna Huffington collapsed in her office from exhaustion and woke up in a pool of blood. That was the wakeup call she needed. Now, she practices transcendental meditation daily and ironically, the busier she is, the more she meditates.
“The busier we are, the more we need to connect to our inner wisdom and power,” she says, stressing that taking time out to meditate will make you a better worker. “You know exactly how much battery your smartphone has at all times and if it gets below 13 percent, you freak out and look for a charging shrine. But what about yourself?”
Dr. Suzanne Steinbaum, Lenox Hill Hospital heart specialist and host of “Focus on Health”
As a cardiovascular doctor, Dr. Suzanne Stienbaum sees first-hand how transcendental meditation has life-changing affects on one’s health. “This is the only type of mediation clinically shown to reduce blood pressure and has substantially reduced rates of heart attacks, strokes and death,” she tells us. “Stress is a medical issue. It affects your arteries, cortisol levels and it slows your heart down. Transcendental meditation gets to the root of the problem.”
Robin Roberts, “Good Morning America” news anchor
Robin Roberts was introduced to transcendental meditation through her colleague, George Stephanopoulos: “I saw how calm he was — even during chaotic moments — and I was like, ‘What do you have? I want some of that!’” She says it has been especially helpful to her as she overcame breast cancer. “Meditation won’t prevent things from coming your way, but it will help you in the recovery process,” she says.
Not only is Lesley Jane Seymour the editor of a successful women’s magazine, she’s a mom and also in graduate school. Yet she still finds 20 minutes twice a day to meditate — sometimes she even meditates on the subway. “Transcendental meditation turns off the constant noise of life,” she says. “Once that noise goes away, I’m clearer and faster.”
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