A Daily Practice To Reclaim Your Attention
By Dawna Markova, excerpted from Collaborative Intelligence
When I ask people what is their favorite way of connecting to themselves, most have no idea what I’m talking about. The following tool is an exquisitely simple and elegant way of taking charge of your attention. It helps you find sanity in the crazy moments of life.
• Choose any sense—what you feel in your body, hear, or see around you—and write or describe out loud what you are experiencing for one minute.
• Describe just the information your senses give you, without thoughts, comparisons, or opinions.
• Shift to another sense and describe it for one full minute.
• Shift to a third sense and describe it for one full minute.
“Right now I am seeing the birch trees outside my window move slightly in the wind. I see pollen and new fuzzy buds on the tips of branches. I see a red bird land on the grass and turn its head. Then I feel my fingers type each of the keys and spring back. I feel my neck tensing as I tilt my head back. I feel thirsty. I hear the creaks in the walls of this old house. I hear the inhale of my breath. I hear music down the hall.”
You can set a timer and do it for any amount of time. One man I worked with did it for forty minutes and told me it was better than any drug he had tried (and he’d tried many of them). We think of it as increasing circulation to all your senses and refreshing your mind. The results are remarkable. It slows you down and puts your mind into neutral. It brings you back to center, back into your body and the present moment.