Get to Meet Our Fab Four Interns

There have been a ton of exciting changes happening around the Track 5 office this month. We’re getting ready to launch our latest online brand, we were all treated to ‘zenful’ office massages, and with our company growing, we couldn’t be happier to welcome four new interns to the team.

Without further hesitation, I’d like to introduce our new interns:

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Amanda graduated from Millersville University in December 2015 with a bachelor’s degree in English. She loves to read constantly and enjoys learning something new that changes her way of thinking. She joined the Track 5 team to learn something different and be exposed to the world of marketing. When she is not working all the time, Amanda loves to be laughing with her family. Her hobbies include reading, writing, watching Netflix, and sleeping.

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Connor is a senior at Millersville majoring in speech communication, with a focus in broadcasting and minor in entrepreneurship. When he’s not focusing on schoolwork, Connor plays in a local band called Navigator and writes original music for himself and his colleagues. Exploring the outdoors, seeing concerts, and meeting with friends are a few of Connor’s weekend activities—when he’s not inside writing or reading. After college, Connor hopes to start a small business or work for other fledging start-ups in the local area or beyond. Traveling is also high on his list of future plans, and if this is combined with music, he’d quite enjoy himself. For now, Connor is thrilled to work at Track5Media as a digital marketing intern and learn the ropes of an exciting, creative company.

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Kierstin is a senior at Millersville with the expectation of graduating in May 2016. She is studying business administration with a concentration in marketing and minor in graphic communications. She has worked in the store of a local orchard, so over the last few years, she has gained an uncommonly large knowledge about cherries, peaches, and apples. While Kierstin is not consumed by work or school, she enjoys cooking, baking, spending time with her fiancé, planning her wedding, and keeping up with rally (a motorsport). Kierstin dreams of traveling and loves to hike whenever the time and weather permits.

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Rebecca is joining the Track 5 team from Millersville University as a senior. Studying speech communication with a concentration in public relations, Rebecca hopes to complete her degree in May 2016. During her free time, Rebecca can be found dominating on the field with the Millersville Women’s Rugby Club, and she spends the rest of her days enjoying her friend’s company, going on impromptu adventures, and mentoring younger players on her rugby team.

Practicing Mindfulness in the Workplace

When you’re at work, appointments and family obligations are running through your mind. And when you’re at home, meetings, projects, and other work responsibilities are cluttering your brain. It is not uncommon for someone to have trouble focusing on the task at hand, so how do we overcome this work-home balancing act? Simple. Begin practicing mindfulness—a growing movement that is buzzing among Millennials and Baby Boomers alike.

So what is mindfulness, you may ask? According to Psychology Today, mindfulness is a state of open, active attention on the present. When you’re mindful, you observe your thoughts and feelings from a distance, without judging them good or bad. Instead of letting your life pass you by, mindfulness means living in the moment and awakening to experience.

Mindfulness is more than a philosophy. This modern movement is derived from ancient Buddhist roots, and since then, there is strong scientific evidence that backs up the notion that mindfulness actually changes the way the brain works. Through mindfulness, individuals can improve their work-life balance, and mindfulness is something all leaders in the workplace should know about.

From a study, it was determined that eight different areas of the brain are affected as a result of mindfulness, two of which hold significant interest to business professionals.

The Brains Behind Mindfulness

  1. The anterior cingulate cortex, or ACC, helps self-regulate tasks and activities. If the ACC were to become damaged, the individual will act impulsively and hold onto ineffective problem solving strategies, and the lack of mental flexibility will make it difficult to adapt to new methods of behavior. The ACC also helps with decision making and learning from past experiences.
  1. The hippocampus is buried inside the temple and is associated with emotion and memory. In addition, the hippocampus is covered in cortisol receptors, which can be damaged by stress and stress-related disorders such as depression and PTSD. Essentially, the hippocampus regulates how resilient the brain is to outside stressors.

Practicing mindfulness can improve:

  • Perception
  • Body awareness
  • Pain tolerance
  • Emotion regulation
  • Introspection
  • Complex thinking
  • and sense of self.

While it is fairly new to introduce spiritual methods in the business world, mindfulness is slowly making the transition from a “nice to have” trait to a “must have” way of thought among executives.

Some Means of Mindfulness in the Workplace

Embrace your surroundings: Sink into your chair, breathe in the scents around you, take a good look at the office decor. Allow yourself to make use of all of your senses from the time you brew your cup of coffee in the morning until the moment you exchange goodbyes with your coworkers.

Replace complaints with gratitude: Each time you feel the urge to complain, take a moment to reflect on all there is to be thankful for. No job or working environment is perfect (although it can come pretty close), so embrace all the good surrounding you instead of feeding negative thoughts.

Keep a list or journal: Making a list can be utilized to jot down thoughts without distracting yourself from work, whereas taking a few minutes at the beginning and end of the workday can alleviate stress and give you the freedom to let your innermost thoughts loose.

Remember to breathe: Too often, we become overwhelmed with tasks and planning. Whenever this happens, make use of meditation techniques. It’s amazing how much peace a few moments of mindful meditation can bring.

Easy enough, right? As Lao Tzu once said:

“If you are depressed you are living in the past.

If you are anxious you are living in the future.

If you are at peace you are living in the present.”

I think it’s safe to say that the ancient poets and philosophers were way ahead of their time.