Spirituality at Work
By Stephanie Gretchen Burgevin. Stephanie is a writer and retreat leader. She is an associate faculty member of Shalem and a graduate of theirLeading Contemplative Prayer Groups and Retreats Program and leads spiritual and secular programs. Stephanie manages Shalem’s blog and is one of the social media coordinators for the Shalem Institute Facebook page.
Being contemplative, bringing your spiritual self fully into the workplace can be a challenge. I’ve never been very boisterous about my religion so trying to find the balance between being true to myself spiritually while not making anyone else uncomfortable has been a little tricky at times when I’ve worked in an office. I worried about making someone feel uncomfortable or excluded.
However, I had a refreshing, inspiring experience this week at a marketing conference I just attended.
I was happily surprised that many of the speakers, both keynote and regular, talked at length about being true to oneself, finding balance in life, and being vulnerable with coworkers and one’s clients. One speaker even quoted Buddha! Yes, you read correctly, I was at a marketing conference, not a meditation conference.
This is a sign of great hope for me. These were top-notch experts in the field, all were highly successful business people, and attendees came from Tanzania, Germany, India, Canada, the U.S. to name a few!
I work from home, so the idea of being contemplative during business hours is no longer a stretch for me. When I am having trouble creating something, I meditate on it, take the project into prayer. I have an icon on my desk and a spiritual photo on my wall. I can be as steeped in Spirit as I want and remember to be.
But this theme of personal truth, balance, generosity, and love was a new high in the business world for me. Could this signal a shift in the business world away from dog-eat-dog greed? How can we support being contemplative at work?
Have any of you experienced this in your work life? Are you seeing a shift in the business mindset?