Salt is delighted to introduce the second piece of wisdom from its spirituality and finance columnist ‘Just In Time Guru’. JIT Guru is the alter ego of “Raj”, a thirty-something, London-based city professional with over a decade’s experience working at some of the world’s pre-eminent investment firms.
The workplace is not the most common place to promote spiritual values. However, if this planet is to continue providing the nourishment and safe shelter we all need, as well as the mortal pleasures many seek, it may be the most effective place.
The challenges faced by Mother Earth, and all of us temporarily living here, continue to mount – climate change, dirty energy, unsustainable tourism, throwaway fashion, feeding our growing population and wasting food. As far as we are aware, this is the only inhabitable planet in the universe so let’s do our best to save it.
If it is humanity’s arrogance causing the issues, could the promotion of spiritual values transform our selves and planet for the better?
Spiritual values for humans being
The belief that humans are both physical and spiritual beings feels like it’s spreading fast. It’s the idea that what we see, hear, smell, touch and taste is not all there is. That, beyond an illusory surface, there is some mystical order if only we could meet and make sense of it.
Slowly but surely, it seems more and more people are recognising and searching for their divine nature. One that reminds us we are separated only temporarily and, in fact, we are never really separate at a deeper, eternal level which exists beyond time and space. If so, it makes “do unto others as you would have them do unto you” all the more important – as everything is interconnected and “oneness” prevades, by hurting others you are in fact also hurting yourself.
Spiritual values can help us to re-connect to this divine dimension of human experience. They are different from materialistic ones, which focus on meeting basic human needs – food, shelter, health, education – and satisfying human wants – profit, power, pride, property.
What are some of these spiritual values? Compassion. Unity. Honesty. Integrity. Humility. Kindness. Trust. Generosity. Selflessness. Tolerance. Patience. Forgiveness. Courage. Hope. Harmony. Respect. Non-violence. Non-harmful. Love.
Promoting and practicing these is particularly useful if you’re keen to combat human vices which move you away from the divine –greed, anger, hatred, jealousy, pride, deceit, cheating, exploitation, oppression, delusion, selfishness. These may appear helpful as they may make you feel better but, ultimately, they are a short-term fix which leave you (and the planet) in a worse position.
5 ways to promote spiritual values in the workplace
If you want the universe to help you and your business, you need to start by helping it. And that requires surrendering your material-based “ego” in order to search within for your “true nature”. Easier said than done, especially if those surrounding you are not on the same wavelength.
So here are 5 ways to promote these values in a secular environment:
- Dedicated training
Mindfulness courses and business coaching are two ways to promote these values. Breathing meditation, the foundation of mindfulness, provides at least 10 benefits to employees and can help to transform your business. Similarly, life or business coaching aims to draw out a person’s full potential through internal reflection rather than external direction. Dedicated training is best achieved on an opt-in basis so you do not impinge on an individual’s freewill.
- Company values
You can build relevant values into your internal culture and external marketing by stating what your company stands for. It could also be helpful to state what you do not stand for. This is particularly useful if your business is committed to long-term relationships rather than short-term profits. ConocoPhillips has even incorporated “SPIRIT” into its company values and the name of its quarterly magazine.
- Individual characteristics
What type of culture do you envision and how does this define the characteristics required of employees? If you’re going to have company values, you need people who will abide by them. Make a list of the traits that support your values, and bring them out at appraisal and compensation times.
- Dedicated space
Many offices already have dedicated chill out areas, creativity spaces or games rooms. Why not create such a space for activities of a more divine nature, such as meditation, prayer and yoga? It’s said that all the answers are within us, if we’re willing to take the time and space to find them.
- Inspired leaders
Seek out people who live the values and are passionate about nurturing these in their teams. This probably needs a top-down approach with leaders taking charge and empowering those lower down traditional corporate hierarchies. Inspiring leadership can drive the search for sustainable solutions which create a positive impact in the new economy.
Even the big began small
A belief in the divine and the concept of infinite possibilities means there is no limit to what we can achieve. Yet it must start by using personal transformation to unlock your purpose. By harnessing your individual power, you can help make this planet a better and more sustainable place. It’s not too late.
Even the largest oak grows from a small seed, so you never know where one small step today may lead. As Gandhi wisely said:
“Be the change that you wish to see in the world.”
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