Aware of what – I hear you ask.
Aware of any number of things. Being aware of my emotions from moment to moment, being aware of my interactions with others from moment to moment, being aware of the goings-on around me from moment to moment, being aware of other people’s actions, reactions, emotions – you guessed it – from moment to moment.
The first step in finding out who I am is becoming self-aware.
Unfortunately, half the time I am so caught up in what I am doing or what I need to do next, I am hardly aware of my own self, let alone others. In my rush to get things done, I ignore to pay attention to what is going on in my head – same thoughts running around over and over and over……. I am surprised that it doesn’t turn me mad.
How do I become aware?
As I am writing this, I am aware of my thoughts running counter productive to what I am doing. Thoughts like – “is this really necessary for me to do this, isn’t this subject being written on countless number of times, what are you going to add new to it” – etc., etc., etc.
As I am aware of those thoughts, I am pushing myself through to do what I am doing – writing this post. Can you relate to this? Let us stick to becoming aware at this stage and not go into self-doubt as yet, because that is a huge subject and requires quite a lot of attention.
Pardon me if I indulge in this subject but I need to give an example to illustrate here. You can substitute this example with any number of other similar incidents that happen in our lives.
I get angry at my son for doing or not doing something. I yell at him and take it out on him. Turns out what he did or didn’t do weren’t deliberate, planned, intentional etc., I realise that. Shame, guilt and anger at self kicks in because I was in the wrong. When that kicks in, what do I do? I try to then justify my actions in spite of my conscience screaming at me in shame, anger etc., It is very uncomfortable to silence that voice, so I turn the speaker volume up on my justifications and drown the voice of the conscience, bury it deep inside and decide to move on.
Awareness is muffled, silenced, drowned – UNTIL NEXT TIME and the cycle repeats. I cannot look at myself in AWARENESS without JUDGEMENT, CRITICISM OR JUSTIFICATION.
So, self awareness generally kicks in different stages. Often it is an awareness after the event has happened i.e., hind sight. As the saying goes – We all are wise in hind sight. But that is a huge beginning I say. The point is – it is not enough to be aware in hind sight, it is what we do with that awareness.
When we start acting on the awareness, as uncomfortable as it may be, without judgement, without justification it becomes a habit. Before we know, we are aware of what is happening whilst it is happening and corrective actions can be easily undertaken.
I am sure you can relate to the above example, just change the scenario and the process is still the same.
What can I do? I need to put self-effort in and act on that self-awareness, only then I am beginning to make changes. What kind of self-effort?
ACCEPTANCE of what I did and how I am feeling about it – to myself. I don’t have to publicly declare that I made an ass of myself (pardon me) but accepting it to myself, without guilt, shame, worry or anger at self, and WITHOUT JUSTIFICATION or JUDGMENT – just a silent non-judgemental observation and acceptance of what happened.
Is that enough? No, it then requires an action – self effort. Without self-effort, self-awareness is useless. Self-effort here would be promising yourself kindly and gently that you will not jump to conclusions before you had your facts correct and acting on that promise.
I know, that is hard to do – being gentle and kind to you. We are our own worst enemies, but that is another post entirely later. For now, please go along with me.
Be gentle and kind to yourself as you become aware and if it is a behaviour that you are not happy about, make a promise to yourself that you will correct it and act on it. You are one step closer to a greater peace of mind.
Will you join me in this journey? Catch yourself, correct yourself gently, be kind to yourself and promise not to repeat the action. This last step is the most important – be kind to yourself and not repeat the action. There in lies the secret to peace of mind and peace in the world.
Would love to hear your comments about your journey.
Until next time