Tag Archive | Self-Awareness

On dealing with involuntary thoughts

Don’t believe everything you think.


Fragments from imaginary dialogues

Our involuntary thoughts [<link; short read] constantly come and go, outside our control. Some are resourceful, others are not.

The involuntary thoughts we believe become our reality.

How can I stop believing the thoughts that don’t serve me?

Detach yourself from your involuntary thoughts. Notice them without judgment (Non-Judgmental Self-Awareness), in the same way you might watch the clouds in the sky. I call this practice, thought gazing.

Think of your involuntary thoughts as suggestions. 

Never take the first suggestion. Always consider multiple alternatives.

Let go of those that don’t serve you. Even better, play with them. Use them as creativity fuel, in the same way an improviser might use suggestions from the audience to craft a magical experience.

Non-Judgment

Fragments from imaginary dialogues

“What do you mean by judgment?”

“Judgment is a kind of evaluation.

Reality is neutral. We view reality through a filter of meaning. Whenever we evaluate something as positive or negative, we project meaning on it.

Evaluation is interpretation.

Viewed in pragmatic terms, some interpretations are empowering, others disempowering. I call disempowering interpretations, judgment.”

“What is non-judgment?”

“Non-judgment is a practice.

It’s a self-awareness practicenoticing when you judge yourself and others. I call the process of directing attention to notice judgment, the lens of judgment. For me, using this lens was a revelation. I hadn’t realized how often I did it.

It’s also a self-love practice – lovingly breaking the unresourceful thought pattern by gently letting it go.”

The Most Important Practice (MIP)

Fragments from imaginary dialogues

“What is the Most Important Practice?”

“Awareness.”

“Awareness of what?”

“Your Inner World.

The outer obstacle is an illusion. The inner obstacle is all there is.

Fullness 2

Fragments from imaginary dialogues

“What is Fullness?”

“I consider the Body and the Mind as a single entity – the BodyMind.

BodyMindfulness, or simply Fullness is a unifying concept, integrating Mindfulness and Bodyfulness (Embodiment) into one.

This is an instance of Integral Thinking.”

Lens of Thoughts

Watch every thought. Always ask, why am I having this thought? (Naval Ravikant)


Fragments from imaginary dialogues

“How can I practice Awareness?”

The biggest obstacle to Awareness is your own thoughts.

To practice Awareness, direct attention to your thoughts.

Set the intention at the beginning of every practice. (Priming) I call this the Lens [<link; short read] of Thoughts, or thought-catching.

Whenever you notice a thought, say to yourself, ‘thought’, smile, and let it fly away.

This is the essence of the practice.

You can add nuance to the practice by noticing different types of thoughts

Instead of ‘thought’, you can say to yourself, ‘disempowering thought’, ‘ruminative thought’, ‘creative thought’, etc.

The ultimate goal is to internalize the Lens of Thoughts.”

Fullness

Fragments from imaginary dialogues

“What is the difference between Mindfulness and Embodiment?”

“Both essentially mean Self-Awareness.

Mindfulness adds the nuance of Non-Judgmental Awareness.

Embodiment adds the nuance of Awareness of yourself AS a Body. It could equally be phrased Bodyfulness.”

“What if you integrated them together into one word: BodyMindfulness?”

“It’s a bit long.”

“How about simply Fullness?”

On Centering

The ancestor of every action is a thought. (Ralph Waldo Emerson)


Fragments from imaginary dialogues

“How can I optimize my centering practice?”

“You initiate and guide your practice with thoughts expressed as meaningful words – I call them word-thoughts

In attempting to optimize the process, you’re essentially asking:

When centering, what do I want to think?

You’re creating an optimal sequence of word-thoughts.”

“I have a tendency to overcomplicate it and create too long a sequence.”

“Make simplicity your mantra. Make the process three steps at most.

I call the first item of the sequence, the access-point. Make the access-point something deeply meaningful to you. Your highest value, your Center.

What is your Center?”

“Love.”

“That is your access-point.

Whenever you initiate the centering practice, think Love.

Let’s make it a three-step process.

What do you want the next two steps to be?”

“Breathing, and a body check.”

“So we have a sequence:

Love
Breathing
Body Check

This is the macro-sequence. Every item of the sequence can itself be a micro-sequence.

For instance, you can just breathe. But you can make it more powerful by smiling as you breathe and thinking ‘Peace’ –  the beautiful practice you’ve learned from Thich Nhat Hanh. 

Se we have a micro-sequence:

(Conscious) Breathing
– Smile
– Peace

What are the key aspects of the body check?”

“Noticing and adjusting my posture, noticing tension, accepting, and letting go.”

“So we have another micro-sequence:

Body Check
– Posture
– Tension
— Accept
— Let go

Visually, the process looks something like this:

Breathing, body check, posture and tension are essentially self-awareness practice.”