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Workplace Zen: Middle path at work

Ralph Waldo Emerson

"To be yourself in a world that is constantly trying to make you something else is the greatest accomplishment."

Ralph Waldo Emerson

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Workplace Zen: Middle path at work

Workplace Zen: Middle path at work

https://medium.com/age-of-awareness/workplace-zen-middle-path-at-work-25161c311a73

medium.com

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Key Ideas

Ralph Waldo Emerson

Ralph Waldo Emerson

"To be yourself in a world that is constantly trying to make you something else is the greatest accomplishment."

The Bell Curve

The Bell Curve for performance appraisal: If there are 100 employees in a company, 10 employees are branded the top performers, 10 employees the poor performers and 80 percent are branded as average performers.
In a rating driven system, no employee can escape the bell curve. And these assumptions are failing to motivate employees.

Workplace Zen — The 3 T’s

  • Think: Right thoughts produce right actions and right actions inspire others.
  • Talk: Dilute the speech about your accomplishments. If we stop talking about ourselves, we find much to learn about.
  • Toil: be very present in everything you do. Work hard when you have to, relax when it's time to relax.

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A Zen Parable
There was a man riding on a horse. When a man walking on the road asks him where he is going, the rider replies, “Why are you asking me? You should ask the horse.”

The ho...

Emotional Intelligence

The ability to monitor one's own and others' feelings and emotions to discriminate among them and to use this information to guide one's thinking and actions. -Salovey and Mayer (1990)

Emotional Mastery

It manifests itself in the kind of statements we make about ourselves, in relation to our emotional skills and success.

Qualities such as confidence, awareness and optimism, come under the umbrella of emotional intelligence. 

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Everything Changes

During a Q&A session a student said to master Roshi he’d been listening to his lectures for years but couldn't understand. So he asked Roshi to reduce Buddhism to one phrase. "Everything cha...

Empty Your Cup

A university professor researching Zen sought master Nan-in, who served him tea. Nan-in poured his visitor’s cup full, and then kept on pouring. The professor watched the overflow until he no longer could restrain himself. “It is overfull. No more will go in!”

Like this cup,” Nan-in said, “you are full of your own opinions and speculations. How can I show you Zen unless you first empty your cup?”

Non-Judgment

A farmer was consoled by his neighbors who claimed it was bad luck his horse ran away. The farmer replied “Maybe.” The horse returned with more horses, so his neighbors said it was luck. The farmer said “Maybe.” Later a horse broke his son leg and the neighbors said it was a misfortune. The farmer said “Maybe.” The next day his son escaped conscription thanks to his broken leg and the neighbors congratulated the farmer on how well things had turned out. The farmer said “Maybe.”

Time goes on and good and bad are two sides of the same coin. Being aware of this allows us to find peace and happiness.

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What Zen Is Not
  • A habit
  • Simplicity
  • A state of peace
  • A state of mind
  • A minimalist aesthetic
  • Living simply
  • A destination
  • Just being in the moment
On Zen
  • “Zen” is a shorthand for Zen Buddhism, introduced into China in the 6th century, and emphasizes enlightenment for the student by the most direct possible means.
  • Zen is a path to fully awaken to your original nature, which is present at all times.
  • The word Zen comes from the Chinese word “chán” and the Sanskrit word “dhyana, ” which means “meditation. ”
  • A Zen mind cannot be understood from the perspective of our ordinary, dualistic mind.
  • Zen practice may calm our minds, bring more clarity, and infuse us with greater kindness.
Shunryū Suzuki
Shunryū Suzuki

“Zen mind is one of those enigmatic phrases used by Zen teachers to make you notice yourself, to go beyond the words and wonder what your own mind and being are. This is the purpose of all Zen teaching—to make you wonder and to answer that wondering with the deepest expression of your own nature.”

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