The Power of Self-Awareness: A Manual for Mind

The Power of Self-Awareness: A Manual for Mind

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When you think about your mind the latest research says it goes beyond your brain or even your body. It is a seat of consciousness, the essence of your being. If you want to be meaningfully alive you need a proper function of your mind. Brain is only a physical substance and it is confined to what is inside your skull, but your mind is the conscious product that fire neurons. According to Dan Siegel, professor of psychiatry mind is a journey to the heart of being human. I have observed many people who wanted to live life more consciously and intentionally but unable to do it because they think changing is not possible and they were overwhelmed by listening the external voices.  Self awareness is a state where you understand your thoughts, emotions and behavior and how they will affect your world around you. Until and unless you know who you are or what you are in order to change your thoughts to change your mind. For any project undertaking or buying a home we learn and spent quite a while to learn about the current situation. My personal transformation started when I started to learn about myself. God created everyone to discover themselves and live their life true to their calling, passion, purpose and destiny. 
Life is a manifestation of where your energy concentrate. Imagine  you have many rooms in your mind. You have the electricity passing through all the wearing systems in your rooms. You switch the light on in the room you are present. Some rooms are named as sad, mad, glad, happy, jealousy, anger, money, work, sex, art, education, politics so on and so forth. Awareness is the place or the room where you are present in any given moment. You can't be present in two places at the same time just like physically and at the same way you can't glow the bulb of your mind or awareness in two places at the same time. Multi tasking is technically a myth, no one can multitask your mind. Abraham Lincoln once said, ”Most folks are about as happy as they want to be.”  Nothing in the world is destructive but at the same time everything in the world has the potential to be destructive. It is the matter of the amount of attention you give to anything in life. There is a myth called Monks can't hold a Mac. 

In the world of noise what we will do to foster connection and pay attention. Victor Frankl said between stimulus and response there is a space. This space can be called choice. How will one reach the mindfulness possible in the world of artificial intelligence.  Have you ever thought about how many number of thoughts passing through your mind each day. We human beings have anywhere from 50,000 to 60,000 thoughts per day, but according to some psychoneuroimmunology research, as many as 98 percent of them are exactly repetitive thoughts from the previous day. We are creatures of habits and more significantly 80% of them are negative thoughts. The negative thoughts takes or drain more energy than positive thoughts. Just like smiling face take less muscle power from your face than the sad face. 
The thoughts and words like “never,” “should,” “can’t,” complaints, whining or thoughts that diminish our own or other’s sense of self-worth deplete the body by producing corresponding chemicals that weaken the physiology. I am sure it will not surprise you when it comes to the end of the day you are exhausted. Can we do our life and our shopping that is made in a complaint free world. The working class is paid a decent amount of money, the people work in the shop are payed a good decent amount of salary. Can we drink our coffee from the place where the workers are paid good and decent amount of money. In this exploitative climate what are different steps you can take to let loose the power of your self awareness. 

1. Self awareness will lead you to develop your ego strength  

You need to be your best friend, you need to treat yourself better and you need to love yourself and if you don't do it no one in this world will do that for you. Stop punishing yourself by killing your emotions, psychological needs and even your physical needs. The love and attachment comes only after being exposed to something. In the same manner you need to develop your self awareness to know yourself. We live in a world where people wear mask and that seems normalcy. People might have told you that you are fat, bad, ugly and not even up to their expectation. If you live your life for others and if that depends on them you will destroy your self confidence. As human beings we have the capacity to process our thoughts, conceptualize, analyse, create stories and perspective in our mind, it is the same capacity helped us to think outside of box. 

2. Self awareness will lead you to get out of defence mechanism 

This is purely a Freudian or psychodynamic identity or theory. People want or crave miracles and effortless change. The hermit crab or lobster will not grow if they remain to live in the same old shell. We pay the defence mechanism because we want to protect or defend ourselves. This also can be called as an unhealthy distance from fully self awareness or unpleasant thoughts, behavior, feelings or emotions. Some categorizes into primitive or non primitive or mature defence mechanisms. The healthy personality is the person who is out of this game or defence mechanism.  They are Denial (Reality does not exist or not real), Regression (reversion to an earlier stage of development or refusing to accept stress), dissociation (multiple personality disorder or people use to have a disconnected view of themselves in the world), Compartmentalization (disconnection between part of themselves with different value systems),  Projection (a person's undesired thoughts, feelings and impulses onto another person due to lack of acknowledgement of one's own motivations and feelings), reaction formation (lack of capability to express the right feelings instead of showing the opposite to an acceptable behavior), Repression (unconscious blocking of unacceptable thoughts, feelings, behavior and impulses), Displacement (redirection to an acceptable objects or an harmless people), Intellectualization (Instead of accepting the reality a person blames the medical procedures and the lack of capabilities), Rationalization (Finding reason and blaming the reason), Undoing (the harm you committed replaces the praises you offer), Sublimation ( replacing unacceptable with more acceptable ones) compensation (psychological counterbalance replacing weakness with strength) and Assertiveness (desired communication skills often seeked out). All the defense mechanisms are mostly a learned behavior from your childhood. The positive aspect of this is that you have the capacity to unlearn while you are an adult. The negative aspect is that unlearning is more difficult than learning. 

3. Self awareness will lead you enhance your leadership potentials 

Self awareness has the power to keep you from hurting or exploiting people. People who have greater self awareness has the potential to share intelligence and do not fear about competition, inadequacy, intolerance etc. Leadership is not a born privilege to the few but it is guided by the belief in themselves. To be a great leader is to enhance the ability to reach great potentials through believing in themselves through the power of self-awareness. Leadership is very often understood from a relationship framework.  Understanding your own thoughts, behavior and emotions will help you understand others. The ability to empathize facilitates better personal and professional relationship. Some of the qualities of leadership are stopping emotional reactions, changing your belief systems, quite the criticizing voice or noise in your inner self, developing communication and create a healthy life patterns. 
Basically there are many benefits to self awareness such as you will live an authentically happier, fulfilling and genuine life, ability to redirect your thoughts and emphasize positive ones, develop a positive interpersonal surroundings, gain and ability to live courageously and intentionally and ultimately will make your dream come true. 
This is a copyrighted material (C) December 2016 Binu Peniel. 
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Dr. Binu Peniel

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