Friday, 25 January 2013

The Word of the Week - Getting to know Your Self

 How many of you really know your true self?  More often than not, you have an idea of who you are, your likes and dislikes, as well as certain behaviours that you attribute to “being you.”  Oftentimes, we operate as if we are on auto-pilot and consequently demonstrate the same robot-like behaviours when dealing with issues or thoughts that we have without an awareness of what we are actually doing. 

For a very simplistic example, you ask someone to do something for you and they affirm that they heard and understood your request; however, sometime later you find out the task has not been done.  Following your normal response (dependent upon what frame of mind you are in), you may automatically get annoyed with the person, which may lead to  thought processes that further nit-pick at the individuals shortcomings. Thus creating a habitual dialogue in your head.

My question is, have you ever observed your own behaviours and thought processes as you act them?  As difficult as this concept may seem initially the practical application is not. You have what is known as the “thinking mind” and the “observing mind.”  The observing mind can sit and watch the beauty of a butterfly in flight, just be in that moment and study it without judgement or opinion.  The thinking mind captures a thought that says “oh what a beautiful butterfly, look at the colours, oh that reminds me of a time when I went to Australia….” Now the thinking mind has gone off on a tangent, it is no longer in the present moment, it has moved onto other thoughts. The observing mind’s attention is now focused on the thought, being pulled away from the present of just observing the butterfly and now is being directed to observing  a distant memory of the past.
I am sure you can imagine how many more thoughts that one instance could lead to, and left to its own devices,  the thinking mind now digresses further until you have full blown chatter going on in your head.  The act of observing yourSELF is by having no opinion or dialogue with the thought processes; making no judgements of what you are doing or thinking but just observing yourself from another perspective.  This act of observing allows you to be present in the NOW, a watcher of your own thoughts and actions as they occur.  When you stop observing, you can then have interesting dialogue as to what was revealed about yourself.

Just for today, try and be an observer of YOURSELF for a few minutes, this exercise is extremely insightful in determining the core essence of who you are and is helpful in pinpointing habitual behaviours that you may wish to change or modify.

Have an insightful weekend.

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