The Power of Paying Attention

What we pay attention to shapes our world and can make a radical change in how we view our reality; altering our direction and changing how we experience and move through life.

We may focus only on the negative if we live in an automatic, unconscious way. We start to see mainly negative people and situations around us. We begin to lose connection with all the positive in our life.

Negative Bias

Our human predisposition sets us up to be on the lookout for danger. This is an old survival instinct dating back to the time we were hunter-gatherers, keeping us safe and alive. Our brains are hardwired to scan for potential threats.

While technology has had a rapid evolution, our brains have retained this old genetic survival mechanism. The likelihood of being attacked and eaten by a wild animal is almost nil. However, when our brain identifies a potential threat: stress overload, rejection, or failure it translates this as life threatening. This leads into the 4 trauma responses to manage the threat: fight, flight, freeze and collapse. This basic impulse to protect ourselves is automatic and unconscious.

Re-form

We can’t control what life sends our way, but we can pay attention and decide how we respond. Showing up in a more mindful way is a new choice to let go of old outdated tendencies to control and predict outcomes. If we can take a pause and begin to question our beliefs about the world, and not take our emotional reactions for granted, then we are planting the seeds for a new way of seeing and being in the world.

Mindfulness Practices

Some natural ways to release tension and return your body and your system back to its normal state of balance.

  1. Shaking: animals naturally shake to release tension after a life-threatening situation. I love this one. It’s one of the quickest and easiest ways to release stress and shake off excess energy in your body. Just shake it off.

  2. Silence: allow your awareness to shift from reading these words to hearing the sounds around you. Then move from hearing sounds to a curiosity and interest in the open space all around. Rest or sit with this watchful, silent awareness. You can sit with this for 10 seconds or 10 minutes. Do what feels right for you.

  3. Gratitude: by instilling authentic gratitude into your daily life, you uplift and improve your own outlook, also bringing it into others’ lives. Your gratitude changes your inner ecology and inspires and raises your vibration. Some gratitude thought starters: take 3 deep breaths, notice the beauty in nature, smile, say thank you, meditate, take a walk, send love to people you don’t like, see the growth opportunity when you make a mistake. Begin and end your days with gratitude.

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