Awareness is such a precious commodity in our lives. When we experience true awareness, the resulting awakening can lead to...something quite magnificent. Awareness brings into focus exactly who we are and what we do or do not need in our lives. It can bring the clarity we need to make an important decision. It is a simple thing, but also possibly the most crucial aspect to affecting positive change in our lives.
Just think of a decision you have to make that you are undecided about. Wouldn’t that decision be much easier to make if you could crystalize exactly the essence of who you are and the values you hold dear? Having awareness means knowing exactly this and being able to proceed in life with confidence in your decisions because of this knowledge. With this confidence we are able to face and accept the ever changing world. Because we know who we are and where we stand in every situation. Then we find that acceptance comes to us easier and from there we can make positive change a reality.
So how do we attain more awareness? How do we know ourselves better? It’s not an easy task. We are constantly thinking about what we are going to do later in the day, replaying encounters in our mind, watching something on our phones, or a variety of other mental tasks that take us out of the present. We don’t become aware of what we feel or are experiencing from moment to moment because our minds are occupied with these other tasks. SO many of us go through our entire lives without really being aware of who we are simply because we don’t spend the time with the present moment. To remedy this, we need to slow down and spend time in the now. How might this look? Start by trying to give your mind a break now and again. Simply BE for a moment. On the ride to work, turn off the music, video, phone, inner thoughts, etc. Just be AWARE of what you are experiencing - the sights, sounds, smells of the world around you. Take note of how you feel right now in the moment. Ask yourself, ‘how do I REALLY feel right now?’ ‘What is my body telling me right now?’ Notice you are not asking “why” in these moments. The first step is always to just be aware without judgement. After doing this more often, you’ll find the knowledge of “why” comes quite naturally and without analysis.
For a deeper, more keen awareness exercise, try something closer to meditation. Bring your attention to a SPECIFIC body part or aspect of the world. Take a minute, or much longer if able, to just notice what that body part or piece of the world is experiencing. How does it look, feel, move, etc? Don’t judge what you notice. Just take the mental note and let the thought slide away.
My challenge for you going forward is to start small and do these exercises once or twice a week and build up in both frequency and duration as the weeks go by. From there, you may find yourself taking actual, written notes on what you experience. It will all help setup and clear the way for acceptance and meaningful change in your life. Start becoming aware to open yourself up to change!