Helping women to live a conscious life is a personal mission that keeps me moving, motivated and in flow
Consciousness is a journey (a life journey if you ask me). We all go through phases and have ups and downs but once we start the journey, there is no way back.
What can we do to increase our level of consciousness?
When I reflect on myself, the people I know and the situations I’ve experienced, I have identified the following unique characteristics of “conscious people”.
1. Conscious people live in the present moment.
The present moment is a magical space where we can connect with our reality with no internal commentary. No judgement. No anger. And no anxiety. Only peace and connection with who you truly are.
When we live in the “here and now”, we are aware and mindful of what is happening around us in this very moment.
What is the benefit of being present?
We connect with our feelings, with our body (that is always grounded in the present. Our mind is, on the contrary, always travelling to the past (usually worrying about a memory) or to the future (usually getting anxious about something that may not happen). When we are present, we are grounded and connected.
The present moment is a “no time” space. I like to think about it as the “eternal now” where there’s no room for negative emotions, anxiety or fear.
Don’t dwell in the past or the future if they come to mind. Allow the thought to come and go and try to spend most of your time in the present because it is all we have.
The practise of yoga has helped me immensely to stay in the present. When I’m on the mat, breathing, the present is my only choice. I can’t breathe in the future or in the past. My body and my breathe only allow me to connect with the now. I’ve no other choice because there’s no other choice. Yoga has been (and still is) my best teacher.
2. Conscious people set up intentions
I take a few minutes every morning and pick a couple of things I would like to achieve during the day. They are usually not big things:
- weekly grocery shopping
- call my mum
- finish a work presentation
- try a new recipe
- Sometimes I decide to face something that I’ve been putting off for a while. This is harder. When I do that I visualise my emotional reaction and anticipate how to regulate my emotions. Sometimes it works and sometimes it does not but it’s always good to try.
Intentions point to our dreams (big or small). They’re the first step to make them happen.
By setting up intentions, we are planting the seeds of our future reality. Everything starts with a thought. We imagine it, we dream about it and we make it happen. Intentions are powerful thoughts that will ignite our actions.
Setting intentions is a practice. The more we do it, the easier it becomes.
What is the benefit of setting up intentions?
Intentions help you to create the life you love and deserve.
3. Conscious people know how to manage their reactions
Our body is always ahead of us. That’s why sometimes we’re sorry we didn’t think twice before we just did this or that.
How do we break the vicious circle? Start by sensing your body when you feel a strong emotion coming.
Try not to react just yet. Just for a second.
Observe your thoughts
The space between two thoughts is consciousness
When I distant myself as the observer, I am creating awareness and bringing consciousness to my life.
Over time and with practice, something shifts. It’s very subtle, but little by little you will notice that your reactions are not as extreme as they used to be and you will feel the peace behind your thoughts.
Be kind to yourself and do your best. That’s all we can do and remember that tomorrow is always another day.
4. Conscious people communicate assertively.
Conscious people communicate their own needs honestly and respectfully.
This means saying “no” when we don’t want something and saying “yes” when we do.
When we say “yes” to avoid confrontation or to avoid hurting someone’s feelings, we’re teaching our brain that what we want and value isn’t important.
Women very often put aside their own wants, needs and wishes in favour of other people.
I have struggled with this for years (and still learning).
I used to believe that love had no boundaries.
It was a huge learning for me to realise that it does and that’s why it is so important to communicate assertively. Say “yes” when you mean “yes” and “no” when you mean “no”.
It is ok to say “no” and it’s your right to do so with honesty and respect for yourself and others.
5. Conscious people know how to reframe their perspective.
The quality of our thoughts equals the quality of our life. So…. what would happen if we could consciously transform our negative thoughts into positive ones?
- “ It’s my fault” > “I am trying my best”
- – “ I never get it right” > “ I am learning every day”
- – “ Everybody knows more than me” > “ I enjoy observing and learning from others”
- – “ This is impossible” > “ Everything is possible”
- – “I can’t do this” > “ I can do anything if I put my heart into it”
- – “ I am too old” > “ I have a lot of experience”
When we change our perspective and rephrase the way we talk about our lives, we can create a reality that serves us.
Talk to yourself with kindness and compassion and you will literally change your life.
6. Conscious people know how to manage their energy
These are a few things we can do to protect and manage our energy:
- Create healthy boundaries
- Keep hydrated
- Take a nap
- Identify what drains you
- Avoid/limit alcohol and smoking
- Go to bed early
- Notice your thoughts
- Notice your feelings
- Write it down
- Eat well
- Focus your attention
- Express gratitude
- Practice compassion
7. Conscious people practice reflection
This is a way to process what has happened during the day and to create space to listen to your inner self.
When we reflect, we develop a better understanding of ourselves and others. This automatically increases our level of awareness.
Reflection & self-reflection are emotional intelligence skills. The more we become aware of what we think and what we feel and the more we are able to name those thoughts and emotions, the more conscious we become.
Reflecting on my day to day helps me to plan little adjustments for the things that I would need to improve on and also helps me to identify and celebrate my wins.
One of the most powerful gifts reflection has given me is the ability to identify my self-limiting beliefs.
The more self-aware I am, the more I am able to identify what is holding me back so that I can face my fears.
Self-reflection also allows me to connect and trust my intuition. When I do that, life flows better an I self-sabotage less.
Reflection helps self-confidence, and self-confidence helps connection. Win-win.
The capacity of self-reflection distinguishes humans from animals.
There are many ideas, theories and attempts to explain what consciousness is, and none of them have managed to give us a complete and holistic definition of consciousness. However, we all have a personal experience of what consciousness feels like when:
- we live in the present moment
- set up intentions
- manage our reactions
- communicate assertively
- reframe our perspective
- manage our energy
- practice reflection