The WholeSight concept seeks to help others (myself included) become more conscious and make changes where necessary, so it seems necessary to discuss why these four words are important... Awareness. Intention. Action. Grace.
Lately it seems that while people have their heads physically attached to their shoulders/body people, on the whole, do not seem to be psychologically integrating what all is going on in their lives in a meaningful way. It seems there is a lack of awareness in all of us and our individual ‘puzzle pieces’ (so to speak) are scattered, not fitting together in a way that we are able to see our bigger picture clearly. The ways in which we are impacted and effected by daily life events and bigger life experiences are cumulative and significant, and if unprocessed can cause distress leave us with work to do. It is through awareness and integration that we can find ourselves in a better place.
Yes, the world we live in today is unlike any other time in history. Life is fast paced and chaotic, so much so that we often cannot even comprehend all that is going on around us. The thought of taking time for one’s self can be thought of as selfish and unnecessary. We are of the belief that we should just go-go-go, not stopping for any reason. This mentality actually does us a disservice because instead of stopping to process what has happened, how we are feeling and what we are thinking, we shove it down and suppress it. At some point, however, what has been pushed aside often rears it’s head and knocks us off our tracks. What is not dealt with consciously causes us to suffer unconsciously.
Being introspective allows us the opportunity to be aware of and discover the pieces of ourselves that are trying to get our attention. In a non judgmental way, be aware, listen to and accept what you're telling yourself. It is often times of distress that cause people to contemplate change. While a change for the better is usually welcome regardless of surrounding circumstances, my hope is to shed light on how important and helpful it is to become more in-tune and aware of what is going on internally on a frequent basis in order to make changes before life becomes too overwhelming.
Unless we are conscious of what is going on inside of us we cannot go about determining what we’d like to be different or figure out how to create an action plan to change. Without awareness we cannot contemplate our intentions and therefore we cannot make changes. Intentions are things we aim for or plan to do. Being intentional means to act deliberately and on purpose. Once we are aware of what is going inside of us we can decide what we want to be intentional about as we move forward. Maybe you aim to work fewer hours, or start an exercise plan. It could even be a plan to be more social or turn off your cell phone at night or on weekends to spend uninterrupted time with loved ones. Whatever your intentions are, it’s essential to remember that change is a process that takes time.
You might have the best intentions but struggle to make what you want to have happen a reality. This is where an action plan comes into play. Think about your end goal and then work your way backwards to create a realistic plan for yourself. Keep front of mind the thoughts and behaviors you currently have and what intentions you have realized. Create a simple list of steps that seem doable to you that will help you reach your goal.
Remember that small wins=success in time. Remind yourself of your end goals as a way to keep yourself on purpose. Some days will go better than others. That is ok. Just be sure to extend grace to yourself on the days that don't go as hoped. As long as you’re trying and keep at it, your intentions will eventually lead you to action, and ultimately to a change. Once the chance occurs, reevaluate. How does it feel? How does it fit with your life? If you experience a positive change, I venture to guess that it will be a change that lasts.