Sensory Awareness Leads to Mindfulness

IMG_1085Do you want to live your life with more mindfulness? Do you want to stop rushing toward the end of your life?

In a Reology Retreat we begin each day with a form of mindfulness meditation called Sensory Awareness. In this practice we use our senses to slow ourselves down and get more deeply connected to how we feel.  In doing this we begin to notice how much we miss when we live our lives on autopilot and we learn how to slow down to notice what is happening right now.  I notice the breeze on my skin, the sounds around me, the warmth of the sun, the gentle motion of clouds, and perhaps light and shadow and colors all around me.

In Sensory Awareness practice we try to let go of our tendency to think about the world we are experiencing (stop labeling, comparing, analyzing, judging) and instead, directly experience the world through our senses.  Our senses operate in a non-verbal world. This mindfulness practice allows us to kinesthetically connect to the present moment.

With this practice our senses become sharper and we notice more details. We become aware of how we feel and more fully conscious in our lives.  Sensory Awareness is best done when we set aside a time every day, but we can do this throughout every day because our senses are with us around the clock.

To begin this mindfulness practice we might move in slow motion and then at times juxtapose this rhythm with rapid movement to notice the difference. When we slow down long enough we can notice our breath has taken on a new and slower pace. We can find that our experience of tuning into our body’s pace can be very different from absentmindedly rushing around at our mind’s pace.

We can become fascinated observers of the world in the ways we did as children, before we began using language. At that point we did not care about what things meant. With language we try to create meaning of each experience. As toddlers, we did not have to package each observation into something we could “know”. We just enjoyed pure experience, just observing, just sensing.

With this mindfulness practice we can begin to stop rushing toward the end of our lives.

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