Awareness sharpening games

Awareness sharpening games

Awareness sharpening games 150 150 Manolis Stratakis

Play as many of the games described below as you can. They will sharpen your awareness. They will help you gain a better perception of your body and of the environment, which is very important for a calm and pleasant life.

When brushing your teeth

Try it with your eyes closed for 1-2 minutes. Feel the contact and the overall sense of the toothbrush hair on your teeth and gums. Feel the toothpaste foam bubbles that burst in your mouth. Focus just on a single sense at a time.

In the shower

Allow your mind to have a short break by focusing on one sense at a time. Pay attention to the water drops which fall on your head and your skin, or to the sound of the water which falls on the shower floor.

On the treadmill

Switch off the iPod and close your eyes (hold the side handles if possible) and listen to the sound of the machine, your breath or the other sounds around you. Try to focus on the feeling of the particular muscles which are exercised. Let time pass without thinking anything. Just feel how your body responds.

When eating

Chew slowly your food, for at least 30-40 times each mouthful. The first times you may need to count but after a while it becomes a habit. Try to feel the taste and the texture of the food as it changes. Switch off the TV and your mobile phone, avoid to do anything else in parallel. Just focus in all the details you can detect about your food. Try it for at least a few times so you can enjoy the experience and then you decide whether you continue.

When you touch an object or a person

Try to do it in an active manner, with cognizance. Feel the sensation of the touch. The pressure on your fingers or your body. The temperature (heat or coolness) that emits, the hardness, the moisture, the energy. Sense the feelings this touch generates.

When seated

Feel your weight on the chair. Recognize the contact points. Scan your body. What are the angles of your arms, legs and pelvis? At which points do you detect some tension? What points feel totally relaxed? Lean forward or shift your body slightly at some direction. Is it better now or worse? Do some tests and gain as much awareness as you can.

When you wait

Look around you. Observe the people and the objects you see. Pay attention to all the details you can identify. If there no other objects to observe, turn your attention to yourself. Focus on your breath. How does it feel? Shallow and short? Deep and relaxed? What feelings can you detect? Anxiety and impatience? Peacefulness and boredom? Remember that whatever you feel is temporary and is ok. You gain control this way.

When in pain

Locate the pain point. Its size. What “color” is it? How much space does it take? What is its exact shape and intensity? What is its composition and temperature? Is it stable? Does it move, throb or thump? Is it acute and piercing? Is it sharp? Recognize, embrace and approve the pain!

 

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