Recently I watched the movie Transcendence with Johnny Depp and Morgan Freeman. It was definitely entertaining but what I enjoyed most was the fact that it made me think. The movie reminded me of how dependent we are on the internet, the beauty of all that’s intertwined with our creator and the simple truth of why we were created. “He created us to be with him.”
In the movie, they had created a smart computer that could do an astounding number of things except be human with feelings and emotions. The skeptic would ask the computer named, Pinn, “ Are you self-aware?” Pinn would then say, “That’s an interesting question, are you self-aware?” Hmm, self-awareness, am I self-aware? How is being self-aware beneficial? Does being self-aware mean I’m selfish?
Wikipedia defines self-awareness as the capacity for introspection and the ability to recognize oneself as an individual separate from the environment and other individuals. Introspection is the examination of one’s own conscious thoughts and feelings
In my yoga classes, near the end in savasana, I remind everyone to take note and be more aware of how they are feeling and how their body is feeling in the present moment. It seems we have to be reminded to be self-aware it’s not something that comes easily for most of us. We often do think of ourselves but it’s usually to judge or beat ourselves up over something we’ve said, done or ate. This is not self-awareness, this is self-judgment. Self-awareness allows us to examine our behaviors and thoughts without judgment. It’s a way to detach for a moment and simply observe what is going on within ourself. This is a healthy observation that we can commit to daily. It’s not selfish to observe and be aware of where we are in the moment. It’s actually selfish not too. We are constantly going, we have so many demands and people depending on us to make it all happen that setting aside 10-15 minutes or however much time we can manage allows us to create a healthy balance. It gives us a moment to check in and see what we need in order to be able to give our best.
How do we create more self-awareness? Meditation is a great way to start creating more self-awareness. Taking 5-10 minutes to sit and observe your thoughts can help you refocus and redirect. Allow yourself the freedom to be still. If you have a particular issue or question that’s been weighing on your mind. I challenge you to take that question or issue and write it down, find yourself a quiet spot even if it’s only for 5 minutes. Set a timer if necessary, I’ve done this on several occasions. Ask yourself that question and be still, be silent, see what comes up. Don’t judge your thoughts that pass through, simply sit with them and see what they are telling you. A lot of times we already know the answer in our heart but we’re so busy and consumed with being everything for everybody else that we forget that we have to take care of ourself first. Maybe the answer will not come the first or second time but take time to listen to what your body and your instincts are trying to share with you. It’s the same good advice that we are advised on every time we fly “in case of an emergency, put your oxygen mask on first before attempting to help others.” In order to help others, we must first help ourselves.
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