Government Connections - Spring 2011 - (Page 38)
Be Now Here
By Lisa Silverman, MA, CGMP
WHERE ARE YOU
at this very moment? Are you on a plane on your way to a meeting? Are you sitting in your living room while your kids do their homework? Or, are you in your ofﬁce, surrounded by a buzzing copy machine and wondering when the next pressing email is going to hit your inbox? You’ve identified where you are physically, but where are you mentally at this very moment? If you are at home with your family, are you really there w ith them or is your mind back at your office? If you’re at work, are you thinking about your weekend task list already? When was the last time you were in the same place both physically and mentally? “Be Here Now” is a concept to which I was introduced by a former employer. It is one of the values of that corporation, and while I have not worked there for almost two years now, it is a value I still strive to carry with me throughout my daily life. The concept is amazingly simple to understand, yet in an era of BlackBerrys, Facebook and Twitter, it becomes increasingly difficult to actually do.
The first time I was told to try this concept I was at a staff retreat. Our homework assignment was to “be here now” for 20 minutes with one person in our life or task. I had a surprisingly pleasant cell phone-free dinner with my family that evening as we shared what we did that day and took our time to just talk with each other. Another person said that, when driving his son home from soccer practice, he actually talked with his son and found out that he had some really interesting things to say. Someone else said that she took the 20 minutes to call her best friend, and not while she was washing dishes or folding laundry. When given those 20 minutes to focus on one person or task, we all found that it was both refreshing and rewarding to give our attention to only one thing at a time. Being here now means being focused. When I am at work, I do my best to focus on work. Emails from friends and family can wait until I get home, and I can make important phone calls during lunch. The same applies to being at home. When I am with my family in the evenings, I am paying attention to them. I am not checking my work email (generally) and the only preparation I’m doing for the following
day is packing lunch. When I’m with a friend and my cell phone rings, I ignore it, because I am spending time with that one friend. I respect her time and I value the time we have together. So, in an effort to truly enjoy each other’s company, I let voicemail answer the call. I will return the call when I can give the caller my full attention as well. I will admit that being here now is not a practice that comes easily. It requires time to learn and a willingness to do it. I can also admit that when I truly am being here now, I am enjoying the moment and appreciating the clarity and dedication that comes when I am fully engaged in only one task. Put aside your iPhone while at home with your kids. Respond to your emails without looking at the new ones as they come in. Call your best friend from your couch with a cup of coffee in your hand. Go to that next meeting and only work on the task at hand. Take the dog for a walk and enjoy the fresh air. Enjoy being focused. Focus on enjoying. Be here now. G
L i sa Silve r m a n i s S G M P ’s E d u c a t i o n & Training Manager and may be contacted at firstname.lastname@example.org.
When given those 20 minutes to focus on one person or task, we all found that it was both refreshing and rewarding to give our attention to only one thing at a time.
GOVERNMENT CONNECTIONS | SPRING 2011
Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Government Connections - Spring 2011
Government Connections - Spring 2011
Travel Tips and Trends
Good to Know
Dieting on a Per Diem
Who Will Fight For Government Meetings?
Why Do We Give?
SGMP Welcomes New Staff
Working with the Government
Be Here Now
Ethics and Pearls
The Meeting Minute
Government Connections - Spring 2011