By Katie Ziegler
Thanks for following along with NCSL this week as we shared some of the ways we can assist legislative staff as you get ready for the next session.
Our goal is to provide you the tools you need to stay informed and do your jobs better. If you’re interested in additional training, connect with one of our professional staff associations to learn more about opportunities to learn with your peers.
And please let us know if there’s a topic you’d like to see addressed in future staff weeks.
If your state holds a legislative session in 2020, you have some busy days and, perhaps, late nights ahead.
We know that legislative staffers are dedicated to the legislative institution and to public service, and that you care deeply about your jobs. When time is short and stress is high, how do you maintain quality work, peace of mind and your health?
NCSL’s podcast, "Our American States," addressed this question in an episode titled "Mindfulness: Legislative Staff Elixir."
Megan Jones Bell, a psychologist and the chief science officer of the meditation company Headspace, shared some of the benefits of developing a mindfulness practice. She reported that mindfulness, or “being present in the here and now, free from distraction, is associated with improvement in general wellbeing, happiness, compassion, focus, and also with reduction in feelings of anxiety, burnout, aggression and irritability.”
According to Jones Bell, now is the time to work on building up your “stress buffer” and strengthening your resilience through meditation practice, so you will be able to put your best foot forward in the new year.
Making mindfulness a priority, even during the busiest times, can bring increased clarity and effectiveness to your work.
Katie Ziegler is a program director in NCSL's Member Outreach and Digital Communications Division.