Awareness can be described as having knowledge of and a state of elementary or undifferentiated consciousness. Thus, awareness is the ability to observe how we create something - as we do it - noticing the consequences, as it happen or unfold. In fact, in many cases, awareness allows us to “see” the consequences before they actually manifest, something that can save us from unexpected and unnecessary grief and misery.
Awareness is the first stage in the process of learning about and contextually understanding a new product, service, concept, perspective, idea or point of view in which we have received information about the existence of the “new”, but has not yet formed an opinion about it.
Awareness is the state or ability to perceive, feel or be conscious of events, objects or sensory patterns in our environment. In this level of undifferentiated consciousness, sensed data can be confirmed by us without necessarily implying an understanding of it. More broadly, awareness is merely the state or quality of being aware of something. Awareness is regarded as our initial perception and cognitive reaction (preferably a response) to different environmental stimuli, situations, conditions and/or events.
Awareness is a relative concept. We may be partially aware, maybe subconsciously aware or may be acutely aware of an event. Awareness may be focused on either an internal state of mind - such as an intuitive or non-rational feeling - or on external events by way of sensory perceptions and observations. Thus, within an attenuated system of awareness, our minds might be aware of much more than is being contemplated in a specific society or group consciousness (i.e. the launching pad of awareness normally is a curious mind that poses critical questions).
The foundation of awareness is not to fill an empty mind with knowledge and facts, but to evolve a closed mind into an open mind that have the audacity to ask annoying, awkward, harsh and troublesome questions.
Deep down we have the qualities of clarity, awareness, sensitivity, warmth, love and compassion…. but, we have little idea at the outset just how extensive, deep and vast those qualities can be! ~ Yaaqut
A higher level of awareness often results in surprising and unexpected creativity, improvisation and innovative thinking. These outcomes of higher levels of awareness are impossible to describe and/or explain. It is unpredictable, differs from person to person, situation to situation and - most importantly - doesn't have any predefined steps of execution, nor a curriculum of operations or an implementation memorandum/manual. It is a spontaneous driven and emerging process that source heavily from networking, interactions and the sharing of both knowledge and experiences.
The following TED-talk delivered by Debrorah Gordon, the outcomes and results of an higher level of awareness quite well…
- Fixed mindset: A mindset that has as its foundation only one absolute truth. For example: When we have an argument with someone and just discover that they were right all along; a fixed mindset will encourage us to reason that “I always get it wrong”. This mindset reflects a rigid thinking pattern and arrogant stubbornness to digest, learn from our mistakes and to oversimplify conclusions, e.g. “I will never get it right… because I am always wrong”.
- Global mindset: This mindset has as its primary source . For example: When we meet a blond person for the first time, we tend to ASSUME that “all blonds are stupid” without even considering changing our minds, once we get to know the individual better. This mindset reflects an inclination to adopt a global or - differently stated - a collective view and reasoning, that if only one incident proved to be correct (e.g. blond people are stupid), it stands to reason that all other similar traits or incidents are accurate and stupid as well.
- Grouped mindset: The very core of this mindset lies in an unhealthy locus of control that is either externally or internally dominated. For example: You have been told that you did not get the promotion that you have applied for, instead, the company have appointed an outside candidate. You stand to reason “I am not good enough to get the job, it is all my fault” (unhealthy dominated internal locus of control) OR “I am perfect for the job, management is just too short-sighted to spot real potential, it is all their fault” (unhealthy dominated external locus of control). Grouped thinkers tend to either place all blame on others or the tendency to regard everything as their fault.
- Flexible mindset: At the root of this mindset lies the courage to question and a willingness to accommodate or to consider the context and dynamics of the situation or circumstances. For example: When we have an argument with someone and just discover that they were right all along; a flexible mindset will encourage us to reason that “I made a mess of that, but one is never too old to learn”. A flexible mindset reflects a willingness to and acknowledge that each situation is different and that responses should/could/might change accordingly.
- Specific mindset: As its foundation specific mindset deals with each situation or event according to its merits. For example: When we meet a blond person for the first time, we do not assume that the person is stupid or less “bright” unless proven otherwise. This mindset reflects a realization of the specific nature of things, events, situations and/or circumstances (e.g. stupidity is a relative concept depending on the person, situation or both).
- Holistic mindset: At the foundation of the holistic mindset lies acceptance. Accept that we cannot control everything in life and that some setbacks are just beyond our sphere of control. For example: You have been told that you did not get a promotion that you have applied for, instead, the company have appointed an outside candidate. You stand to reason “I am not suitable for the position yet, it may be worth the effort to speak to the managers and identify the area(s) in which I could improve myself”. Holistic reasoning allows us to take plenty of punches in life, but never to succumb, submit and surrender to circumstances.
Our mindset - apart from influencing our levels of awareness - also directly impact on our levels of stress. A combination of fixed, global and grouped inclined mindsets have the toxic tendency to highlight stressors and boost the levels of stress that we experience every day. On the other hand, a combination of flexible, specific and holistic mindsets, tend to reduce the negative impact of stressors and subsequently lower our levels of stress accordingly.