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Being Aware of Being Aware

What does being aware feel like in one’s body and one’s mind? Awareness does manifest physically, emotionally, mentally, and spiritually. The trick is noticing the sensations that arise in these areas.

Take for instance a scenario where your connection to your Zoom account gets hung up and delayed. To reconnect, you must restart your laptop, and with so many working from home this restart may take five, six, maybe seven minutes depending on internet service provider, distance from your modem, number of people online at home, etc.

And your Zoom meeting starts in three minutes. What do you notice in your physical body? An uptick in your pulse rate? Does your breathing get shallower? Does your heartbeat increase? Most likely these are happening simultaneously and without one bit of awareness.

Mentally and emotionally are your thoughts spinning out of control? Consciously or unconsciously is your mind conjuring up a story that depicts you as irresponsible, neglectful, unresponsive because you may be late to log on? Are you comparing yourself to images of colleagues and teammates already engaged and connected – and perhaps wondering out loud “where is . . .”?

The key is to bring awareness to the sensations and feelings of shallow breathing, faster pulse rates, and debilitating thoughts. One of the most proven and simplest ways to do this is a powerful, intentional pause. It’s 10 to maybe 20 seconds to literally be still and motionless as possible. Do this standing or sitting.

Next – take three to five deep, diaphragmatic breaths – breathing as deeply into the low belly as possible. On each exhale have a mindset that takes you to a place of relaxation and comfort. Take these deep breaths with one hand on your heart and the other placed just below your belly button.

Like many things, becoming aware to being aware takes practice. You will find such a wide variety of life events where you can apply this breathing component to help you become more aware of your physical, emotional, mental, and spiritual being.


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