When we think of the word "yoga", typically we do not associate the word with a corporate setting. Instead, images of pristine beaches, scented candles, nature, and ultimate relaxation come to mind. Consequently, there is no better place to practice
yoga than in the office -- and beauty arises when we embrace the opportunity to take a deep breath, decompress, and recharge our mind and body for the challenges of the day.
Practicing yoga has a myriad of benefits in the workplace. Stress reduction is linked to yoga, as is an overall increase in well-being. Limiting stress is crucial for reducing employee absences and optimizing their performance. A German study tracking 24 women initially self-described as "emotionally distressed" introduced them to a twice-weekly 90-minute yoga class. After three months of practice, "Women in the yoga group reported improvements in perceived stress, depression, anxiety, energy, fatigue, and well-being. Depression scores improved by 50%, anxiety scores by 30%, and overall well-being scores by 65%. Initial complaints of headaches, back pain, and poor sleep quality also resolved much more often in the yoga group than in the control group." (http://www.health.harvard.edu/mind-and-mood/yoga-for-anxiety-and-depression).
Through yoga and meditation, work has the potential to become much more than a job. Work can be a place in which we thrive - reaching beyond our physical and mental limitations to our highest selves.
Bringing attention to our posture and breath helps us literally and metaphorically put our best foot forward. Throughout the day, it is easy to get caught up in momentum and lose track of the bigger picture. Yoga helps foster an understanding and appreciation of what is within our circle of influence and the things that are outside our control. Understanding this concept is crucial for performance and creating a positive work environment.
Much love and respect.