Breathe in, two, three, four. Hold it for two, three, four. Now breathe out, two, three, four, five, six. One more big breath in, and exhale, all the way to your toes.
It’s amazing how something that seems so silly – counting your breath – can help to pull you into a completely different mindset. By taking that minute to count and concentrate, you can focus on something that is completely you and under your control.
You might be wondering why any of this matters to us here at 1Password. Are we about to add a “count my breath” feature to the world’s best password manager? Although we’re always looking for great ways to bring security and convenience together, that’s not on the roadmap. 😂
As we enter that season where we’re usually reflective, during a year when we all have more to reflect on than ever, I want to talk a little about the importance of finding that centre when you need it most, and how we’re helping our team do that at 1Password.
Make self-care a priority, seriously
As we’re all too aware, it’s a different world than it was a year ago. 2020 has brought changes and challenges we’ve never encountered before, and we’re all doing our best.
Balancing family and work while navigating a ‘new normal’ that continues to change is stressful. As a former Girl Guide, it reminds me of the campfire song Button Factory – where you just keep adding one more little thing, then one more, one more, and boom! You’re done!
“Take time for yourself,” is what everyone says. Well-intended, but difficult to do.
For me, wearing more hats than I know what to do with – from company founder to mom, from daughter-in-law to friend, from teacher to advice-giver – making time for myself often feels like wasted time because there are always THINGS. TO. DO!
And when I try to take time, I then feel guilty about it. But, I shouldn’t. Not so shockingly, when you put yourself last, moving self-care up on the priority list isn’t easy.
Don’t forget to stop and take a breath
Some days are harder than others. Life gets in the way of productivity. And with so much going on, it’s easy to fall into “what if” mode, where thoughts start to stray in multiple directions.
You feel like you’re falling behind and start to pile on the pressure to catch up. Work faster. Work harder. If I just work more, it’ll be okay. Things spiral, and it just makes you less productive.
Stop. Bring things back to centre and begin again with a clear mind.
Talk about those challenges, and encourage everyone to be mindful of their actions. Feelings are just as important as interactions. We regularly encourage people to talk to their team leads about their difficulties and take time off when they need it.
It’s not always easy, but by talking openly, you’re normalizing these conversations. It makes finding the tools for getting through difficult times easier for everyone.
Giving our team the support they need means they come to work healthy and passionate – ready to deliver the excellent customer experience we’ve built our company on.
Carve out time to wind down
A big battle for me is getting the rest I need. A busy mind keeps me awake, and my son is in the same boat. So, we tried out Headspace together. Now, we do a breathing wind down before bed (it’s his favourite) and then launch a Sleepcast – 90% of the time he’s out before it’s done. A few hours later, I launch my own. It helps quiet my thoughts by giving me something else to focus on so I can drift off.
Headspace was such a help to me, that we’ve decided to roll it out to our entire team at 1Password. I might be bad at doing things for myself, but if it’s a chance to set a good example, I’m in – just ask my kids! It’s a small step, and there is more we can do to help our team prioritize their wellbeing. This is an ongoing journey that we’re committed to traveling on.
This year, I’m thankful for…
Like every year, I’m thankful that I get to work with so many amazing people. I’m looking forward to building on our wellness initiatives and making 1Password a supportive and empathetic place to work. Wishing you all a healthy, happy Thanksgiving. ❤️