A different type of TEA can help productivity

In the modern-day workplace, we are expected to react immediately to almost everything. Such was a habit that John, a successful marketing director, was quick to embrace. Rather than managing his environment, John reacted to it. Emails, texts and phone calls beeped, rang and pinged, and his office door was always left ajar as colleagues came and went, bombarding him with questions. His world had become so chaotic that he had little time to complete tasks. He constantly felt a sense of urgency, which left him no time to think or reflect. Whereas his work was once a source of inspiration and meaning, it was now leaving him feeling anxious and overwhelmed when it came to decisions and deadlines. Even simple choices were becoming challenging.

John began spending his nights and weekends completing work at home, as his office was no longer a place to get any ‘real” work done. When his spouse asked him why they never went out anymore, he knew it was time to make a change.

With some coaching, John learned to observe his “TEA” (thoughts, emotions, actions) by stepping back and noticing the distracting triggers that were causing him such distress. Learning to be mindful allowed him to observe and respond, rather than react to every interruption.

Self-awareness is often the first step in creating supportive spaces that better serve us. John took a truthful look at where he was, both physically and emotionally, and began scheduling times where he would close his door and shut off all noise. Slowly, he began to create small periods where he regained his focus.

Another strategy that John learned was to use his triggers (one of which was texts) to pause, take a deep breath and notice the moment. With practice, his stress levels began to decrease and his productivity and capacity for making decisions improved. He remembered why he once had enjoyed his work so much.

Researchers Tobias Teichert and Jack Grinband found that, “Postponing the onset of the decision process by as little as 50 to 100 milliseconds enables the brain to focus attention on the most relevant information and block out irrelevant distractors.” Just a short delay, less than the time it takes to blink, gives us the chance to make better choices.

Learning the skills to observe our thoughts, our emotions and our actions not only allows us to be less distracted, but also increases our capacity to experience more fulfillment in all that we do. Understanding that we can’t control our modern world, but we can respond to it in a controlled manner, is essential for our professional and private lives. Having the courage, wisdom and insight to stay present, flexible and patient can make all the difference in cultivating inspiration and creating meaningful moments each and every day. ?


Linda Janasz is a transformational coach, trainer, researcher and Registered Yoga Teacher (RYT 200) and holds a Ph.D. She developed and teaches a program called Mindfulness, Meditation and Movement (MMM) Training that has helped hundreds reduce stress, increase productivity and discover meaning in an unbalanced world. For more information, visit mindmedmove.com.

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Drew Limsky

Drew Limsky



Drew Limsky joined Lifestyle Media Group in August 2020 as Editor-in-Chief of South Florida Business & Wealth. His first issue of SFBW, October 2020, heralded a reimagined structure, with new content categories and a slew of fresh visual themes. “As sort of a cross between Forbes and Robb Report, with a dash of GQ and Vogue,” Limsky says, “SFBW reflects South Florida’s increasingly sophisticated and dynamic business and cultural landscape.”

Limsky, an avid traveler, swimmer and film buff who holds a law degree and Ph.D. from New York University, likes to say, “I’m a doctor, but I can’t operate—except on your brand.” He wrote his dissertation on the nonfiction work of Joan Didion. Prior to that, Limsky received his B.A. in English, summa cum laude, from Emory University and earned his M.A. in literature at American University in connection with a Masters Scholar Award fellowship.

Limsky came to SFBW at the apex of a storied career in journalism and publishing that includes six previous lead editorial roles, including for some of the world’s best-known brands. He served as global editor-in-chief of Lexus magazine, founding editor-in-chief of custom lifestyle magazines for Cadillac and Holland America Line, and was the founding editor-in-chief of Modern Luxury Interiors South Florida. He also was the executive editor for B2B magazines for Acura and Honda Financial Services, and he served as travel editor for Conde Nast. Magazines under Limsky’s editorship have garnered more than 75 industry awards.

He has also written for many of the country’s top newspapers and magazines, including The New York Times, Washington Post, Los Angeles Times, Miami Herald, Boston Globe, USA Today, Worth, Robb Report, Afar, Time Out New York, National Geographic Traveler, Men’s Journal, Ritz-Carlton, Elite Traveler, Florida Design, Metropolis and Architectural Digest Mexico. His other clients have included Four Seasons, Acqualina Resort & Residences, Yahoo!, American Airlines, Wynn, Douglas Elliman and Corcoran. As an adjunct assistant professor, Limsky has taught journalism, film and creative writing at the City University of New York, Pace University, American University and other colleges.