Mindfulness with Front Office Staff
It’s on the front page of magazines, there is a television series about it, there are hundreds of smartphone apps that teach it, and there are thousands of books on it. We hear about it all the time now, and it has been plastered all over popular media at one time or another. According to Market Research, it was valued at $959 million in 2015, and the average annual revenue growth is forecast to $2.08 billion by 2022. Quite incredible, right? This growth is driven by studios focusing on mindfulness training, which are mostly non-profit organizations or centers that are closely affiliated with yoga studios. Additionally, the hundreds of meditation smartphone apps that are on the market also have played a huge role. All you have to do is flip on Netflix and you can watch the Headspace series as it walks you through how to be more mindful using mindfulness and meditation exercises.
It has been remarkable to watch this growth from the perspective of the performance psychology field. Five years ago, I was asked a question by my graduate advisor, “what would you like to do your thesis research on?” At the time I had an idea of what mindfulness was and have practiced various contemplative practices myself, but I had no idea I could be able to research it, specifically in the performance context.
Jumping from 2016 when I first started conducting research in mindfulness to 2020 when I spent six months with the Chicago Fire Football Club (CFFC) as a mental performance intern, mindfulness has been a cornerstone of my approach. At CFFC I worked with the Performance Advisory and Support Services (PASS) team that predominately works towards developing high caliber academy players. As I worked with the academy athletes, an opportunity arose where I had a chance to deliver a 4-week mindfulness-based meditation program with the front office staff of the CFFC organization. I am extremely grateful for that opportunity, as I learned a lot from the individuals I worked with. Shout out to Felix Yu, Brian Roberts, and Rachael Jankowsy French.