Just as it should be I’m looking to focus on the positive consequences of awareness. Initially, increased awareness can seem negative, and indeed we can’t have one without the other, however, the initial negatives are overtaken by the good, allow me to explain
Some time ago I was sitting in a meeting of managers headed by myself. I was introducing myself; singing my praises and generally bulling myself up before my audience. I was telling these nine managers all about how successful I’d been at varies points during my working life to date. It wasn’t long before one of these managers pipped up: “It seems you’ve been very successful at everything you’ve done!” she said. I instantly understood this as a sarcastic dig at my egotistical rant, and rightly so. My response probably wasn’t as she expected, I simply said, yes, I have, and this is something I want for you guys too.
Whatever you set out to achieve give it your all and never give up
Once drawn to the discipline of meditation it became my aspiration to gain the most from it. Mindfulness or increased awareness is the consequence of regular meditation. There are then consequences to this improved awareness and there is one in particular I’d like to talk about today. That of emotions.
Of late I’ve noticed more of my emotions seem very close to the surface
The overriding emotion, I’m accustomed to being at the surface the majority of the time, has been anger. I know how this connects to my past and I understand the associated fear and it’s awareness that has shown me this. Now that the anger is beginning to dissipate, many other emotions have begun to surface. The best way to describe it is to say: I’ve come home to myself. I’ve begun to feel more human; more in touch with myself and my emotions. Another thing that’s there is a lot of sadness and regret. The regret is something I’m dealing with, and as far as sadness is concerned, I can ease this in one major way: filter what I expose my mind to.
In the past I’ve talked a lot about the media and the importance of filtering what you expose yourself to. The danger of overexposure is the numbing effect. We become indifferent
It could be said indifference to the human condition has its uses. If we become bogged down with the suffering, the media tells us about every day, it can be counterproductive. So, if we want to help, rather than becoming indifferent, I feel it’s far better to accept that we live in a troubled world and then simply switch the news off. It’s unnecessary to remind oneself of this every day. That said, I know switching off the news is very difficult. Much like sorting my addictions to alcohol, nicotine and sugar (that last one still lingers) switching of my addiction to the news has proved very tricky. I find now though, as a result of my improved awareness – of the present moment – watching the news has become damaging. It’s bringing me down. I can’t be indifferent whilst also being aware. What I can and must do now is make the decision to switch it off and find something else to do.
The good consequences of awareness is how much more human we become
All manner of things become brighter and more pleasurable once we’re aware. Aware, it can feel like a shroud has been lifted from your head. It’s as if a level of depression, that you didn’t even realise was there, has been lifted. I’m left wondering how many of us are walking around mildly numb. How many of us, in order to survive, have pushed our awareness and emotions down below the surface? Breath in now, come up for air, it’s time to wake up. It may seem difficult to begin with, but if we don’t do this now, most of us will go to our graves never really experiencing how it feels to be fully alive.