The nature of positivity is not willfully blind to negative consequences — it is simply aware of and able to accept all situations.
A few years back, someone told me I seemed “ignorantly happy”. This led me to begin pondering what it was that separated my my ability to stay happy from the others around me.
After many meditations, I came to believe that my happiness is a direct result of my ability to accept any given situation. It’s not that I don’t grieve or experience emotional disturbances — I just don’t dwell on the parts of reality that I have zero control over.
When you consider the structure of an average human’s life, pain and suffering are present in almost every detail. Our most cherished moments someday become fleeting memories. Our biggest success one day may be the exact cause of our repeating failures the next.
Whether you’re waiting for the small hand to reach 5:00 PM or you’re dealing with the grievance of losing a loved one, pain will present itself to you in any way it sees fit.
In life, we cannot avoid pain and suffering, but we can learn from and accept it.
It’s said that we often gain the most knowledge when we endure the greatest suffering. Our awareness of the present moment allows us to accept life in its entire truth, effectively increasing our ability to manage and manipulate similar future events.
In the same way that it allows us to maneuver the future, it allows us to understand the past and present. True awareness allows us to strategically process and organize our experiences as we maneuver fluidly through the obstacles ahead of us.
The act of being aware, no matter how present you may be, isn’t just the blank observance of existence in real time — it’s also the incredible gift of mutual understanding and respect for our internal or external environment. It is both how we feel and our ability to deliver a proper response to the world around us.
How Does Awareness Benefit Me?
From creating effective career solutions to “fixing” ourselves or our friends, we all have certain expectations we feel obligated to meet. Many times we try to be larger than ourselves by accepting a near infinite amount of additions to our forever growing list of priorities.
A good example of this is starting a second job and missing out on too much sleep. Your need for increased income may have been a proper cause for stress, but two months down the line you may suddenly begin having panic attacks or your health may rapidly decline.
When we allow ourselves to become overwhelmed with a large list comprised of unreal expectations, we lose track of our lives and the apparent truths within it.
The internal dialogue that once kept us in line with our extremely personal needs vanishes as we meet and exceed our limits, both physically and mentally. In an expansive search for our own freedom, we exhaust ourselves as we look deeper and deeper for viable answers or solutions.
Awareness, in its simplest form, is defined as a “well-informed interest in a particular situation or development.” This means you’re actively observing a situation or thought prior to creating a response.
In becoming more aware, you learn to condition your responses as you craft a path through life that’s chock full of decisions you’re actually proud of. When something comes along to throw you off of that path, you maintain the ability to shift onto a new one and begin again with one foot in front of the other.
Through awareness we begin to realize that financial struggles aren’t always a personal invitation from the universe to go get a second job. They can also be lessons which teach you important skills like cutting down on spending or investing in yourself more than you do in others.
When we become more aware, we don’t just obtain magical answers to our problems — we learn to embrace and utilize the concept of letting go. Not because we’ve given up or because we don’t care — but because we’re finally moving forward.
How Do I Become More Aware?
Most people look for immediate solutions to their problems and when they can’t find one, they lose all hope. There are so many ideas, actions, and consequences in life that just don’t make sense no matter how you try to look at them, but that can be hard to accept.
When we become more aware, we realize that learning from our experiences isn’t so much about obtaining a concrete answer as it is finding a way to accept the sometimes unfortunate truth of our condition.
If you’re interested in becoming more aware, start by initiating a conversation with yourself. It helps me to write everything down on paper or on my phone as the thoughts can get quite jumbled from time to time.
Now let’s say that during this conversation with yourself, you bring up the fact that you can’t pay your rent this month, or perhaps you discuss the idea that no one seems to like who you “truly are”.
As the conversation progresses, ask yourself questions like:
“Was it my fault I didn’t have the money?”
“Could I have spent less or saved more?”
“Do people dislike me because of how I treat them?”
“Am I engaged with other people when I’m with them?”
“Should it matter if someone likes who I am?”
You see, through awareness we find the ability to accept our failures and shortcomings as they are, just as we learn to accept life for what it truly is. Awareness isn’t some inept ability to think or feel — it’s an engaging and ongoing conversation between you and your experiences.
During this conversation, we often find that the truth isn’t always a rewarding environment in and of itself. Yet when we accept the truths we are given and submit to our suffering, our petals begin to bloom like those of a radiant lotus flower atop a muddy hill in the middle of July.
The beauty in our human suffering is that, no matter how great it may seem, it will always remain temporary. Though it may create a long, winding road full of resistance and friction — it will always provide us with enough knowledge to adapt to and overcome our greatest weaknesses.
Only through our awareness can we adopt the necessary tools to effectively utilize the knowledge our suffering affords us. We must observe our environment and learn everything we can before responding to its infinite stimuli. Without the proper tools we launch ourselves blindly into the heat of every situation, straining ourselves and hoping for a beneficial outcome.
Take a chance today and discuss the burning questions that float within your mind. If you’re struggling to overcome something, finding the solution can be as simple as taking a deep breath and igniting a conversation within yourself.
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