The One Action That Can Really Change Your Life

July 8, 2015

“You are never not whole. While we may long for it, the great irony is that it is already here in any and every moment, and it is already ours.”
 —John Kabat-Zinn
mindfulness-purpleI just got through reading section two (Sustaining) of Mindfulness for Beginners by John Kabat-Zinn, and I have a new favorite verb!

AWARENESSING (verb) – The dynamic process of being aware. It has no end state. Life itself becomes the meditation process.

We take lots of action every day. We shower, brush our teeth, read, drive, eat, exercise, talk, listen, yell, cry, laugh, think, cook, watch TV, etc. We do a lot! How often, though, can we say that we are AWARENESSING? If you happen to be one of those individuals who regularly practices mediation or other forms of mindfulness, perhaps you are raising your hand and saying, “Me!! I do awarenessing!” If you do, celebrate, because you’re really onto something. Something that can and will change your life.

If you don’t practice mindfulness, then consider the two points I’ve honed in on below, as darn good reasons to develop a mindfulness practice.

Optimize Your Wellbeing

As we’ve posted in many blogs during this summer so far and during last year’s Summer of Wellbeing, there are many ways to approach and ignite our wellbeing. Kabat-Zinn suggests that mindfulness is highly applicable for us if we want to optimize our own wellbeing. This means that although we may be partnering with doctors, surgeons, therapists or healers to help us feel better or get out of illness, through mindfulness we are taking responsibility for whatWE can do to create the optimal condition of our mental, emotional and physical functioning of ourselves.

Through this optimization, or as I like to refer to it, owning our power, we begin to understand and live from the perspective that WE ARE ALREADY AND ARE ALWAYS WHOLE, even if we have problems or illnesses. I hope you read this sentence a few times! Take it in. Through moment-by-moment awarenessing we can truly live out this truth. There is nothing to fix in mindfulness. Instead, “We pour energy in the form of attention and awareness into what is already right with us—what is usually taken for granted.” I hope you read this a few times too!


See Clearly Again

Over the weekend I had the pleasure of seeing a Tony Robbins clip, where he talks about the three steps we need to take to truly get out of our way and experience an incredibly joyful and powerful life— (1) Success leaves clues! ID those strategies that leave clues of success for you. (2) Change your story! (3) Change your state! I won’t go into the details in this post, other than to elaborate on these stories we tell ourselves, the stories that hold us back from moving forward and LIVING in our power. These stories are false stories. They are tall tales. You want the truth? The truth that we know deeply but are not seeing? Awarenessing will get you there!

“Mindfulness is about awareness—it’s capacity to free us from our own habits of self-diminishment and of ignoring what is most important in our lives.
It creates ‘clear seeing’ – knowing the actuality of things rather than being caught in our misperceptions and misapprehensions of reality.It clears us from our habits of self-disctraction.

Want a way out of your life that’s on auto-pilot, where your thoughts make you believe things that you are not? You and I are so much more—so much bigger than stories we are telling ourselves. We can change both our stories and our state through awarenessing – through mindfulness.

Because I love science and data (it supports my woo-woo tendencies!), I’ll share this from the book as well. It’s just too cool not to share! 

A recent study from the University of Toronto has shown that there are different networks in the brain for different kinds of self-referencing of experience. One network, termed the Narrative Focus (NF), is active when we build a story based on our experience. It involves a great deal of  thinking, often coupled with rumination and worry. A second network, termed the Experiential Focus (EF), is active when we are grounded i what is being experienced in the present moment, when we are every much in the body and in unfolding sensory experience – without all the evaluation of the narrative network.

The study found that people who train in mindfulness showed an increase in activity in the EF network and a decrease in the activity in the NF network. This is one example of how training in mindfulness can actually influence how the brain processes experience – in this case, how you experience your life unfolding and what you tell yourself about it. It is not that the EF is superior to the NF. Both are necessary to live an integrated and balanced life. But when the NF predominates, especially out of awareness, it can very much limitour understanding of our selves and of what might be possible. 

So, via awarenessing – this one action that can really change our lives, we pay attention in new ways. We see new things and feel new things. We tap into our true story, which shall set us free.

I’m all about freedom. Feeling free to be me, to live in my WHOLENESS.

How about you? How can awarenessing set you free?

It’s your life. Lead it well.


One Response to “The One Action That Can Really Change Your Life”

  1. William Catoggio Says:

    I love this blog because I think practicing “awarenessing” can help me be a better me.. and everyone I am sure,
    wants to be their best.

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