I didn’t know I was doing it at the time, but it was the most important thing I’ve ever done.
I woke up.
And then I chose to stay awake.
I of course am not meaning that stayed awake all night (though I’ve done that a few times when it was crunch time in the academic world). What I am referring to is the choice to intentionally be aware.
When I found Mindfulness…..wait, that’s not even right. Mindfulness seemed to find me. I wasn’t searching for something to help me feel better. I actually didn’t know how crappy I felt until I started practicing Mindfulness.
This might not sound like a great advertisement for Mindfulness! Though when you have awareness, you have choice. Once I realized how miserable I was (unmanaged stress, anxiety, worry thoughts up the wazoo, constant judgment of myself and fear that others must just know how I’m not good enough, etc.) I had a choice to feel better. Before that, I was just in autopilot, unaware of how crappy I felt and that that was the source of habits I wasn’t liking.
I knew that even just noticing my thoughts, tendencies and misery somehow in and of itself felt better.
It’s like I was waking up, seeing myself for the first time, rising out of slumber that I didn’t even know I was in.
I’d done a lot in my life thus far to numb out from myself.
I recognized that wasn’t working for me anymore.
Something inside me knew….this is how to feel better; intentionally be aware of what’s going on inside. I remember one time hearing myself think, “Okay, now stay awake.”
When translated, “Buddha,” means something close to enlightened one, awakened one, or knower. We all have buddha inside of us. We all can choose to awaken.
So, I made the choice to continue on this path of Mindfulness. Of choosing to be aware of my thoughts, emotions, tendencies, desires, reactions. I had no idea what all this would bring me: feeling at peace no matter what, calming a temper (that I really didn’t like I had), connecting with what I call my Authentic Self, inspiration, identifying my passions and feeling on purpose.
This is still a journey I’m on. There is no finish line here. It’s just keeping at it, choosing to stay awake.
It’s tempting to go back to sleep. It’s tempting to get caught up in external validation, seek “success” as defined by our culture, get hooked into my competitive tendencies, react poorly when I don’t get my way. My humanness didn’t go away. I just woke up to it so I’m aware and make choices that are in line with my values, passions and purpose instead.
Choosing to be awake has transformed me.
Choosing to stay awake continues to transform me.
Every day is a chance to evolve more and more into my highest, best, most loving self.
This is why I started One Moment Center. This is why I created Mindfulness: Basics to Awakening (4 part course where I walk ya through it all – more info on that at the bottom of this email). I wanted to let others know of not just what it means to awaken and how to use Mindfulness to get there, but because the decision to allow transformation is the best decision I ever made.
Whether you can attend Mindfulness: Basics To Awakening or not, I hope that you choose to awaken.
It might be the best decision you ever make.
May you always return to love,