The new FISU Meditation Centre specifically chose Moorgate as the site for the first dedicated Meditation Centre in the City. Founder Rajesh Ananda explains: “Between high-profile positions, responsibility, long hours and pressure to succeed, there’s no doubt that the Square Mile contains a worrying concentration of extremely stressed workers! My hope – and indeed my aim – is for FISU to reach the heart of the companies within the City and encourage them to help their employees’ combat stress through the proven power of meditation. This will directly create wellbeing and better health for their staff members and better productivity for their business. It makes complete sense”.
In 2012, PHAST on behalf of the City of London Corporate, conducted a study of City Workers, of which 44% said that they would need help with stress.
A 2013 study from Bank Workers Charity found that the wellbeing and stress levels of employees in the finance sector were significantly poorer than that of the general working population. Around 65% of employees in the finance industry put in up to 30 hours more than they are contractually obligated to. Furthermore, more than 40% of workers say they have trouble relaxing and 60% admit to having poor quality of sleep. Long term anxiety is proven to affect our mental health – a subject the government if finally addressing.
The anxiety timebomb
3-4 years hence the situation has not improved and probably, if the studies were run again, the figures would be worse. Albeit companies are more consciously promoting exercise as an anecdote to stress, for the majority of people, after the immediate benefits of the exercise has passed the stress returns.
FISU Meditation´s unique form of meditation not only combats stress, but eradicates it at its root, rather than dealing with the effect. All stress has its origin in fear – we fear not being able to perform, problem solve, discipline a colleague or worry about being disciplined. We need to resolve personal issues, pay our bills and often the challenge of that can be an underlying form of insecurity that manifests itself in the workplace, affecting our behaviour and performance.
If the work environment is unsympathetic or has a lack of understanding of employee stress, which is often the case, then this can exacerbate the problem.
Rajesh advises the remedy lies in creating an environment where stress is considered a threat to the company’s well-being: “If the wellness of individual employees is not addressed that will eventually reflect on the company and productivity. So the key is in establishing a work situation where there is a balance between positive pressure and achievement and putting resources and support systems in place? Can a goal be achieved without causing undue stress or burn-out? Can there be a relaxed atmosphere when the pressure is on? Yes is the answer to these questions! If a number of employees meditate they will automatically radiate calmness around the office – and this is very addictive and ultimately very positive!”
What FISU can offer:
– Consultation on a Wellbeing & Stress Management Structure for your organisation
– Consultation as to the main cause of stressors within the company and its culture, required achievement and how to diffuse them
– Consultation into the “expectation” written or unspoken of staff achievement and conduct
– How to convert negative stress from pressure and work demands into positive stress and greater productivity
– Advice on creating a Meditation Room in your building (or converting an area)
– Advice on how to make an early morning or after-work Meditation Room to encourage regular practice
– Regular Introductory Talks on your premises on the benefits of meditation and mindfulness
– Sessions for those who have learnt meditation to revalidate correct practice and encourage regularity (in addition to those that take a course)
– Free Meditation Taster Sessions