Deri's Blogs

Happy Fall! Here’s how Mindfulness can Help

It’s that time of year. The lazy, hazy days of summer are over, and you are now becoming fully engaged in work or school.

Busy-ness can be productive; and it can also be exhausting and stifling. A lot of the difference lies in what’s happening between your ears.

Busy-ness is unproductive when repetitive thoughts take over, when you become hijacked by your emotions, and when you find yourself looking for ways to self-medicate your way through the stress in your life.

Contrary to what you might think, ‘doing’ more is not the answer; ‘being’ more is. And ‘being’ is exactly as it sounds…it’s about pausing, stopping, and just noticing where you are.

You’ve likely heard about mindfulness – if you’ve done any reading on well-being, stress management, or resilience in the past few years.

Mindfulness is the practice of paying attention in a particular way, in the present moment, on purpose, and without judgment. It is often credited with developing increased self-awareness, resilience and emotional intelligence. I am sure you can agree that all of these capabilities are important in your every day life at work and at home.

If you are skeptical about what mindfulness can do for you, that is a pretty common reaction to the invitation to give it a try. You might be thinking:

  • ‘I am not one of those people who can just sit still’, or
  • ‘Being quiet sounds really boring’, or
  • ‘I don’t have the time, patience or energy to meditate’.

Here are a few things to consider:

Mindfulness is not about sitting for hour upon hour, in full lotus, without shoes. Even just one minute attending to the present moment is mindfulness. Over time, you can learn to notice incoming thoughts, and gently bring yourself back to your breath, in the present moment.

Being quiet is definitely not boring! You will soon realize that there is a lot of noise (and some of it very interesting!!) occurring in your mind. As stated above, once you begin your practice, you will become very aware of the amount of traffic ‘up there’. I once read that if we could project our thoughts onto a billboard, we would be horrified…most of them are negative…and repetitive!

Finally, rather than taking (consuming) your time, patience and energy…mindfulness ADDS to your time, patience and energy! Your ruminating thoughts are exhausting! Practicing presence, even just a minute at a time, will help you be able to focus on what’s before you and to and feel more calm overall.

In addition to pausing, and focusing on your breath regularly, here are a few other mindfulness strategies you can start using today:

1) Before you enter a room for a one on one meeting, or enter a large staff event, or enter your home at the end of the day, pause and reflect on what you want to bring into the experience. Do you want to bring: Positivity? Vulnerability? Energy? Optimism? What is your outcome? How do you want to impact the people who will be there?

2) When unpleasant emotions arise, pause and  acknowledge them rather than ignoring them. Rather than allowing them to pull you down, choose self-compassion, and move toward what you want to achieve in that moment.

3) Notice your repetitive thoughts. Reflect on the thought, and then and reframe it (choose a more positive story), and choose your actions according to the reframed story. Remember, thoughts are not facts; they are just thoughts; so choose the thoughts that work FOR you rather than against you.

4) Be curious and ask questions. Even, of yourself! The more you learn about yourself, the better you’ll be able to assume control over your thoughts (and your experience of life in general). The more you learn about others, the better you are able to build the constructive connections you need to achieve your outcomes.

Check out these resources for more information on the benefits of a mindfulness practice:

Happy Fall! Happy Mindfulness! Happy Life!

Deri Latimer is an expert in positive possibilities for people! A TEDx Speaker, Author, and Organizational consultant, Deri works with organizations who want to create happy and healthy workplaces for increased positivity, productivity and prosperity! 


What Clients Say...

“Deri, you are the best! Not a dull moment and the time went too fast!”
Linda Borbridge, Manager, Aboriginal Peoples Television Network
“I’m often asked to recommend a professional speaker who will captivate and motivate, and without hesitation Deri Latimer comes to mind. Deri has a reputation for a no-nonsense, energetic, synergistic approach. Her cutting-edge sessions are the perfect combination of science and inspiration and will have you moving into a new groove.”
Dr. Lewena Bayer, CEO, Civility Experts Inc.
“Deri is the personification of quality, style, and enthusiasm in her message. She delivered a message with our group that heightened their awareness and ability to share success. My hope is that you too will seek her out as a keynote, connector, and catalyst for change.”
Joseph Bork, Program Director, St. Mary’s University
“I am usually the type to sit in the crowd, quietly take it all in, and take notes, notes that end up in a binder, often never to be seen once I return to work. Deri was engaging, fun and as real as they get. I was so moved by her session that I shocked myself by approaching her after the session to chat. During the session I didn’t need to take notes because her concepts hit home and stuck with me. I have already taken her advice and acted on her tips and tools to be more positive. Her positivity is contagious and her message is one that everyone should take time to listen to.”
Amy Normal, VP, Corporate Services, Said Business School, University of Oxford
“I had the privilege of hearing Deri keynote at our conference. She captivates, motivates, and positively engages an audience with her unique combination of wisdom about neuroscience and positive behaviors that can be life changing when put into action. I would recommend her without any reservation for those seeking a speaker who can move an audience – from associates on a manufacturing floor to members of an executive leadership team – into action. Her takeaways are designed for positive impact. Prepare to laugh, to be curious, to be hungry for more time to listen to Deri.”
Vickie Maris, Host, Agile Digital Business
“Deri, your seminar truly resonated with our team. You took the time to learn about our roles, our challenges and opportunities and created an inspiring and motivating seminar just for us and made an impact with every person there. Having your book to use as a tool in our day-to-day has also been very valuable and has enhanced the results we got out of the time with you. We all hope that we will see you again at the next conference!”
Chantelle Arsenault, GBA, Great West Life Assurance Company of Canada
“It was an absolute pleasure to have Deri speak at our AGM. Deri brought an amazing level of passion and energy as she engaged our members with her talk on growth mindset. If you are looking for a speaker to connect with your audience, I would highly recommend that you reach out to Deri. Thank you, Deri – we were lucky to have you!”
Rob Chester, Director Information Security, Wawanesa Insurance
“A wonderfully authentic speaker with an infectious positive energy, Deri takes the crowd back to the roots of inspiration by sparking something within the humanity of the people in the room. Her fantastic sense of humor and knowledgeable way of integrating experiential learning opportunities into an inspirational message makes her a speaker not to miss!”
Ashley Collette, Social Work Officer, Canadian Armed Forces
“I forgot to take notes because I was taking it all in and feeling change take hold…”
Derek Rumboldt-Delouche, Director, Children’s Wish Foundation of Canada
“That was fantastic! That was the most energized I have ever felt leaving a conference!!”
Barb Spurway, Principal Consultant, Protegra
“I cannot exaggerate how positively our Forum delegates reacted to your presentation. You set the perfect tone for the entire conference and left a lasting impression on our delegates and CPA staff alike.”
Sarah Marshall, President, Canadian Physiotherapy Association
“You changed people.”
Michelle Kletke, Human Resources Manager, TNG, Jim Pattison Group