For anyone who is unacquainted with the main principles of yoga, it’s easy to understand why they might only see surface benefits which don’t stretch far past being able to touch your toes. Yet the deeper we dig away from the physical and into the theory, we see what a true treasure trove of wisdom yoga has to offer our modern day lives. In fact we think the step by step yoga path towards freedom also provides the perfect model for moulding a 21st century conscious business. Here’s why we think the business world needs more yoga!
What does yoga have to teach the business world?
There may be a circulating ‘Wolf of Wall Street’ style image of the business world, yet we know there are plenty of conscious businesses out there (just like Blossom Yoga Wear), who aren’t following the dog eat dog formula for getting ahead. Away from the individual benefits yoga brings to our lives, the 8 limbs of yoga (described as ‘an ethical blueprint for living the good life’) also provide the ideal guide for how to create better, fairer and more consciously aware societies.
The 5 Yama’s make up the first limb of the 8 limbs of yoga and largely focus on the world around us and our interaction with it. Here’s why these principles are so poignant in business:
- Non-harming” or “Non-violence (Ahimsa)
This isn’t just non violence in a physical sense (we’re not talking about your bank manager literally slapping you in the face as they refuse your loan), this is as much about a moral compass. When we look at it as asking questions about how our actions and decisions impact not only ourself, but others and even the earth, we realise what a guiding star for business this could be!
- Truthfulness (Satya)
The principle of honesty isn’t just about not telling lies (although that’s obviously part of it). It’s also about remembering the bigger truth in our words, actions and choices. It’s a more ethical business world where we didn’t need to sell out just to make a quick buck. Where we could trust a product or a company to do what they are promising. Where the motivation for being in business was aligned with our highest self and deepest purpose.
- Non stealing (Asteya)
Theft of natural resources, theft of time and energy, taking more than you are giving back. As soon as we widen out the notion of what “stealing” really is, we feel how powerful this principle is when adopted by businesses.
- Balance/right use of energy (Brahmacharya)
Just like when we’re holding a yoga pose we try to be as efficient with our energy as possible, this principle is all about sustainability. In the working world it translates as avoiding burnout, remembering the work and life balance and putting long term harmony at the forefront.
- Non Greed (Aparigraha)
Non attachment teaches us to take only what we need in the now and be fully prepared to let it go when the time comes in the future. We see the wonderful impact of spreading wealth in the business world through cooperatives or the emergence of increasingly popular socially crowd-funded projects in recent years.
We think the business world would be all the better with more yoga philosophy guiding it, what do you think?