By asking for the impossible, we obtain the best possible.Italian saying
If you are serious about achieving a more meaningful life, then you’ll need a new perspective for viewing your life and your career. The following exercise is a new method for going through your day and your week. It’s a new sense of being alive, being responsible, being at choice, and being the architect in your life.
Tomorrow, you’ll be totally conscious about everything you do, see, say, feel, smell, taste, and who you are being. Use your notebook, journal or computer file to capture notes, thoughts, and insights.
Exercise: A Totally Conscious Day
Notice everything! Write down your observations using 1-2 words or several sentences. There is no wrong or right way to do it.
As soon as you wake up, notice the first thoughts that enter your mind. Write them down. Go into the bathroom. Look into the mirror. Look into your eyes. Really look! Smile. Spend a minute looking into your eyes. Smile goodbye. Write down feelings or thoughts you experienced.
As you get ready for work, notice everything: the rhythm of brushing your teeth, brushing your hair, the motion your arm makes as you stroke on your makeup, etc. Write down any thoughts or describe any pictures that come to mind.
On your way to work, notice your surroundings. What are the buildings like? What does your route to work smell like? Can you smell the restaurants, factories, etc? Do you smell trees in bloom? As you get closer to work, what sensations do you notice in your body? Write down every observation.
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When the day is over, spend a few quiet minutes in bed reading your notes. Do you remember things you didn’t capture before? Write them down in a different color pen than your notes from earlier in the day. Finally, spend five minutes writing your impressions of what you captured and what you experienced being totally conscious.
This exercise provides a lot of perspective and insight, but you have to actually DO it, not just read the directions and say, “That sounds like a great idea. I’ll try it later.” It’s really important to “get clear.”
This first step is critical to your success. If you decide to become conscious, to realize what is really going on, you become aware of what it is that you really want. We often become excited after participating in a workshop, attending a seminar or reading a book. We think, “Oh, this is it. This is the thing that’s going to change my life.” However, we don’t make the decision to start, to take action. Or we may think that by simply reading a book, it will somehow magically change our lives: “The information is going to float over me and my life is going to be different.”
When the pebble in our shoe bugs us enough, we pick up a book or attend a seminar. We briefly take off our shoe. We enjoy the comfort of the idea of not traveling with the pebble in our shoe anymore.
When the seminar or book is finished, we put our shoe back on over the pebble. Then we start our journey again. We feel a little lighter and more enthusiastic, because of encountering new material. So the pebble is barely noticeable. However, we never made a decision a conscious choice to remove the pebble or get shoes that keep the pebble from falling back in again.
We never really get started.
Whether you know what you want to do or no longer want that quiet, nag pebble in your shoe, the realization that you need to make a change and take action is a great place to be. When you decide to move forward, it’s truly a momentous occasion. Today, you are finally awake.