Do you yearn for a conscious life, in which you are deeply connected with your inner self? Do you want to create a life in which there is no difference between what your heart, mind and soul say? Do you crave for a life of equanimity, awareness and peace?
As kids, we seem to have a deeper connection with our inner self, we seem to be more conscious. But as we grow up, this connection grows weaker. How this happens or why this happens, I do not know. I do know that it is possible to turn this tide, it is possible to become more conscious and aware than we currently are. It is possible to experience greater connectedness with ourselves and the world around.
I have been trying to do this for a few years now, with some modest success. There are a few things that work for me. I am sharing these with you below. Hope they bear the same fruits for you, as they did for me.
1. Make an appointment with yourself. If you are not doing it already, the first thing to do is to fix a time of the day that you spend with yourself, alone. You just observe your inner state. You listen to the voice inside.
It helps immensely to sit with a journal and write down whatever comes to your mind. Don’t think, justs keep writing.
Your writings will give you insights about your inner state. Some insights will come instantly while some will come over time, as you start seeing patterns in what you write. You will start realizing how you respond to this world, how you react to situations and people.
You will find greater clarity about what activities, pursuits and professions you connect most with. You will begin to see a purpose and meaning in your life. You can use these inputs to give a new, more conducive direction to your life and career… that is what I did. I realized gradually that I felt connected with helping others become more conscious beings. I also connect with expressing myself through the art of writing and with creating something new. All these realizations contributed to the decision of creating this blog and writing on personal development. You can read more on that decision here.
2. Meditation. Meditation helps immensely in raising your consciousness and awareness. It also gives you a glimpse of what the state of consciousness feels like. If you have never done it before, here is a basic meditation technique.
Sit down comfortably. Relax your body. Make sure there is no strain anywhere, you should have a comfortable and easy posture. Focus on each part of your body in turn. Focus on your legs, your butt, your stomach, your back, your hands, your neck, your face and head. Take some time doing this. Then focus on your body as a whole.
Bring your attention now to your breath. Observe it’s natural flow, feel the motions of your stomach as you breathe in and out. Let the breath flow naturally. Take some time doing this.
Now observe your mind. Observe the thoughts running through it. Let these thoughts go. Experience a thoughtless state. New thoughts will emerge, let them go too, gently. Take some time doing this.
Slowly, go through the process backwards to finish – observe your breath, observe your body. Slowly come out of meditation.
3. Practice mindfulness. Mindfulness is an advanced stage of meditation. In mindfulness, you try to stay in the aware, observer state(that you experience in meditation) during your regular, day-to-day activities.
To start, try to be mindful during one particular activity. You can add other activities later, as you become comfortable. Be conscious of your body and breath during your chosen activity, let them be relaxed. Be conscious of your thoughts and let them go when you become aware of them. Try to maintain a thoughtless state while you focus only on the task and do it with full awareness. If it is bathing you are trying to do mindfully, be relaxed. Pour water gently on yourself. Feel the water running down your skin. Smell the soap.
4. Read books on consciousness regularly. Have you observed how reading a motivating quote or book raises your spirits instantly? I still remember when I first bought Eckhart Tolle’s audio book – Living a Life of Inner Peace. I would listen to it on my way to office and, by the time I reached, my mind felt as tranquil and calm as it has ever been. Find literature that makes you feel more connected with yourself, that raises your senses and makes you more conscious. Make a habit of reading such literature or listening to such audio books.
5. Spend time observing nature. You need not take a vacation for this. Whenever you get a chance, observe and admire the green of a tree, the flight of birds, the play of dogs among themselves. the rain, the clouds, the waving grass in the wind, the touch of earth under your feet.
Developing consciousness is about making a strong decision and then practicing. Take up the above activities and do them regularly, form them into habits. Over time, you will find yourself in a deep relationship with your Inner Self… Over time, you will create a conscious life!