To build on its effort to enhance emotional intelligence among civil servants, the Royal Civil Service Commission has initiated a mindfulness retreat.

With support from the Central Monastic Body, the commission organised its first mindfulness retreat camp from January 21-25 at the Royal Manas National Park, according to a press release from the commission.

The training on emotional intelligence was conducted through a training-of-trainers collaboration with the Search Inside Yourself Leadership Institute, which focuses on self-awareness, self-management, empathy, and social skills.

“Mindfulness can be described as the one ability to enhance all other abilities like from making better decisions to seeing things more clearly, becoming more resilient and more principled,” the press release states. “These are qualities that have been accepted and recognised worldwide for outstanding leadership. It is also proven to enhance mental health and psychological wellbeing.”

The Central Monastic Body created the five-day silent mindfulness retreat. The programme was based on the method of Bhavana Krama, the first stage of meditation. The meditation techniques were designed based on the authentic teachings of the Buddha, and texts. Some of the skillful methods of the world-renowned and widely practiced Vipassana meditation programme have also been incorporated.

The objective was also to build the qualities of mindfulness in civil servants.

The mindfulness programme would be offered phase-wise to all civil servants and the commission would ensure that all the interested civil servants would be able to attend the retreat at least once in their lifetime. It would be offered in selected locations across the country.

However, the priority, to begin with, would be given to those in leadership positions as well as those who are about to retire from the civil service.

The first mindfulness retreat camp, attended by eight Senior Executives and Specialists, was facilitated by Khenpo Sangay Khandu, Principal, Institute of Science of Mind and assisted by Lopen Tashi Dorji and Lopen Tenzin Wangchuk.

Staff Reporter