How to develop awareness

What are logotherapeutic skills? How can these skills be practiced and sharpened?

To be human, says Frankl is to be conscious. What are humans conscious of?

We can divide this in a very general way into awareness of self and awareness of other.

In the field of emotional intelligence awareness of one’s emotions is referred to as “self-awareness” and awareness of the world around us is referred to as “social awareness.”

In logotherapy we are looking not only at the individual’s emotions or the social environment but at the essence of the person and his essential place in the world. As soon as we zoom in on the spiritual dimension we’re talking about an expanded awareness.

Self (or essence)-Awareness

In the previous post I wrote about values. Underlying every emotion is a value. We become aware of our values (that which we cherish and is very important to us) by noticing:

If we are angry, which values got trampled? If we are frustrated, what were we looking for that would give our life a sense of purpose, which got blocked or contradicted? If we are thrilled, which values have been fulfilled?

We can enhance awareness of our values by consciously getting into the habit of identifying our emotions and identifying the values lying beneath those emotions.

We can ask the people we are interested in nurturing to do the same. “What are your feelings telling you about who you are as a person and what matters to you?”

Awareness of one’s place in the world and one’s given challenge

This area of awareness is also a skill that can be learned and practiced. We can develop this area of awareness by getting into the habit of asking ourselves certain questions:

a) What is the obvious truth about this situation? What is in the realm of possibility?

b) What are the needs, feelings and concerns of the person/s I am encountering right now? What is this person/s capable of becoming?

c) What is my unique role and challenge? What is required from me in order to stand up to this challenge? Who would I become if I were to stand up to this challenge?

What do you think? Is there any kind of practice or habit that has helped develop your awareness?

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