Living consciously is about taking full control of your life, rethinking the decisions you’ve made pertaining to your life and about reclaiming the right to having the life you desire for yourself rather than settling for one that makes you powerless.
It is about laying to rest the fact that you are the decider of the, ‘what, why, how and when,’ that happens in your life. When you are in control of your life, it gives you perspectives of choices that you’d have to consciously make, in order to incorporate into your life.
Here is a list of questions that you can ask yourself whether you are living your life more consciously or not. If your answers are mainly in the ‘negative,’ then, you’d have to consider incorporating positive measures for more conscious living.
YES / NO
- Are you living life on your terms?
- Are you living for others in your life?
- Do you dress up for yourself?
- Do you care what others think of you?
- Is your job the job of your dreams?
- Do you love your life now?
- Do you voice out your frustrations, if you disagree to something?
- Do you spend enough time with yourself?
- Are you busy? What are you busy about? Is it about you?
- Do you find yourself comparing yourself to others?
- Do you feel a sense of achievement for everything you do?
- Are you doing what you love doing?
- If in a relationship, are you happy with your partner?
- Do you think you have the freedom to speak your mind in your relationship?
- Are you happy with your body?
- Do you eat food that makes you happy?
- Do you exercise because you have to?
- Do you enjoy your own company?
- Are you enough with what you have?
- Do you wake up every morning with a sense of purpose?
Although living consciously is not something that happens overnight, it can happen with frequent practice and skill. All you need is to keep at it until it becomes second-nature. And like with everything else in making lifestyle changes, practicing conscious living is also, a practice-based exercise. Decide to be more selective in your choices, of what makes you happy and what you’d like to have in your life, as opposed to, merely putting up with it.
It sounds simple, but it’s astounding how few people actually do this. It is amazing how easy it is to live life on autopilot and do what we always do because that’s what we’re used to doing.
6 Key Tips to Living More Consciously
- Keep a Journal
Journals are windows to your soul. Keeping a journal can be a way of giving your feelings an outlet unlike any, a place where your deepest thoughts can reside without fear of judgment, blame, or need of justification. Journals allow you to be just who you are and are a place where you can travel through life’s emotions with gentleness, compassion, and deeper understanding. If you haven’t tried journal writing yet, or you have but let it slip or didn’t really get into it, there is no time like the present to start one and to let your consciousness flow through your writing, connecting you with your deeper thoughts and ideas.
Make a conscious review of your daily life. By journaling your thoughts on a regular basis, you become more aware of the little essences that you might have ignored in your routine living.
- Set Goals
Goal setting is a powerful method for thinking about your ideal future, and for motivating you to turn your vision of this future into reality. It helps you choose where you want to go in life. By knowing precisely what you want to achieve, you know where you have to concentrate your efforts. You’ll also quickly spot the distractions that can, so easily, lead you astray.
Set SMART (Specific, Measureable, Attainable, Relevant and Time-bound), goals that motivate you and write them down to make them feel tangible. Then plan the steps you must take to realize your goal, and cross off each one as you work through them.
- Analyse Your Relationships
Analysing your relationship is a healthy thing to do but over-analysing is a dangerous thing. Do things in moderation. Are you in the relationship because you love your partner or are you trapped to the relationship? Find what gives meaning to you. Take note of the details of your togetherness – what does it do for you? Contemplate on your happiness and therein, lies your answer! This analysis applies to every relationship you have with everyone. With analysing, you are able to see things in perspective and be able to become more tolerant, forgiving or even, more prudent with yourself and the people you care about.
- Reflect on Yourself
Reflecting on yourself gives you avenues to consider how you play the roles of your life. See if you are impacting the people or the planet you live on or even whether you are making a difference in your own life. Reflecting helps you to develop your skills and review their effectiveness, rather than just carry on doing things as you have always done them. It is about questioning, in a positive way, what you do and why you do it and then deciding whether there is a better, or more efficient, way of doing it in the future.
- Evaluate What Brings Meaning to You
Review how you spend your time. Until we do a time audit, and keep a log of our day, even if it’s just for one or two days, we don’t really know how we spend our time. And if we do audit our time, it can be very surprising. And if we know how we’re spending our time now, we can make conscious decisions to change how we spend our time in the future.
- Discover Yourself
Take some time to think about what kind of person you are. What do you hold dear to you or what are your values? Whether you live your life according to those values. How you treat people. How you treat yourself. How do you want to be remembered by the people in your life? What value did you bring to other peoples’ lives? Connect with yourself and determine what you need and compare that to what you desire.
To live consciously is to live completely in and for the present moment, perceiving our experiences directly through our senses without any labelling or filtering. This may sound impossible to you, but if you look back far enough into your childhood, you may recall having experienced such pure consciousness before. That was the time when every moment is fresh, exciting and full of surprises. Every sight, sound, touch, or taste seems so new and intriguing.
Living mindfully from moment to moment is to find and bring back the lost wonder back into our lives; it is to rekindle our love and passion for living, and for establishing the very purpose as to why we are here.
– Sujata Nandy