What level of organisation can we reach if we, ourselves, are in disorder?
No matter how you look – the first level of order must come from the inside.
But how can sort out ourselves, make ourselves “in order”? Where do we begin?
Well, there are many approaches and in a way whatever you can think of is a good starting point. Because the MOST important thing is that you really want to do this – there must be a sincere and honest intention behind. When we really want something we enter a state of curiosity and we are more ready to let go of old ways of thinking.
Let us begin in the world of appearances – our thoughts and emotions.
To establish a common ground I will use something that we all can relate to – the trinity of human functioning Thought – Feeling – Action. I know it might be a little discouraging to look at ourselves in this way but remember, this is only a starting point.
Most people agree that our actions follows our thoughts and emotions. Without a thought or a feeling to do something we simply don’t act. It is very important that we acknowledge this mode of operation before we continue. If you hesitate or feel doubt I encourage you to look to your own experience. See if you can notice what precedes any of your actions.
To simplify things further I will introduce a way of describing human functioning seen from levels of consciousness. We can also see these as levels of understanding ourselves.
I would also like to stress that none of these ways of functioning are better than the other. They should be used to see the matter and hand with greater clarity.
In this paradigm we believe (our thinking tells us) that our feelings come from outside ourselves, from other people and situations. We are more or less constantly living in a often very confusing soup of thoughts and emotions and there is very little or no space left for us to operate from. We often have a feeling that life is pushing us around.
We have started to believe that no other person or situation can create feelings for us. We cannot clearly see this in all situations but we are beginning to understand how much responsible we are for our own well-being. No other person can create feelings for us and put them into our bodies. We also no longer hold other people and situations responsible in the same way.
Here we also are starting to gain control over our moods and our quality of living is considerably higher than when we were merely operate from outside-in. However, we are often aware, sometimes painfully, of how hard it is to control our impulses. Deep down there is a desire to do something about it but we rarely know how. Here we have moments of space between our thoughts.
We can really make out a difference between the ever-changing thoughts and feelings and ourselves. Here we are introduced to a peculiar ability which open up a space between within us. When it comes to our thoughts and feelings this space manifests in different ways:
* We no longer get depressed by feeling depressed feelings.
* We no longer get angry by feeling anger.
* We no longer get stressed out by feeling stress.
* We no longer get anxious by having anxious thoughts.
* And so forth…
Feelings are still there. They can still come with the same force as before, but our ability to resist getting swept away by the emotions is much greater than before. We realise that maybe for the first time in our life we can exercise free will and choose which emotions we allow to fill up the space in ourselves. Instead of being controlled by the habitual patterns of behaviour and reflex-like reactions, we have new choices in how we respond and act in the situations that arise.
And If we look real close we might discover that we cannot do or use free will. Free will seems to arise spontaneously from the depths of our being.
As you probably can see, the levels of understanding doesn’t change our thoughts or feelings at all. The change is on a different level. One way of talking about it is that it changes how we think about our thoughts and feelings. And as you can see the biggest difference lies in our ability to choose how much our thoughts and emotions will affect us. This will have much impact on ability to choose how we respond in situations and to the quality of our life in general.
At first appearance it might seem like higher levels of consciousness increases our quality of life but it is more useful to try avoiding to think of them in this way and instead use the description to increase our understanding.
However there is something I would like to point out in the difference between these levels of understanding. It evolves around our emotions and how quickly we can recover from them. It boils down to two things:
* In higher states we recover more quickly from having bad feelings.
* In higher states although the energy in the emotion is strong it somehow doesn’t affect us in the same way.
If you with me this far I think we have reached the magic question. So what can we do to deepen our understanding and raise our levels of consciousness?
My best advice is to encourage you to get curious about what goes on in your head. Direct you attention inwardly and listen to your thoughts. Don’t just listen like you normally listen, but really listen. See what is in there. And investigate if there is a connection between what you feel and what you think.
As I began this article, I would like to point back to the fact that we can not sort out chaos from chaos.
Outer chaos is the result of the lack of inner order. What level of organisation can we reach if we, ourselves, are in disorder?
The bridge between inner chaos and inner order is understanding – and the first we need to understand is ourselves.
Thank you for reading this article. It is inspired by my own life and what I have observed.
Feel free to leave a comment or share it with others.
About the author: Patrik Rowinski believes in cooperation and he enjoys to support anyone who has a sincere will to change. He works as a Mental Health Consultant and Three Principles Facilitator and supports personal and organisational growth through conversations, lectures and in his writing.
Get in touch or learn more through patrikrowinski.se.