July 09, 2011

One Person

The weekend is finally here and my homunculus is worn out and confused.  Normally, I allow him to do whatever he wants, pay attention to whatever he wants, and say whatever he wants.  But not this week!  My homunculus has started boot camp, and the focus of this first week of training has been, yes, focus.


During the week, we've consciously directed our attention with the purpose of hitting "mute" on the little voice inside when it starts needling us.  We've attended to our breathing, examined an ordinary object, inhaled and exhaled our way into the zone, stopped to smell the metaphors, and zeroed in on one task at a time.  For today's challenge, we're going to segue from a meta-focus to next week's theme: empathy.

One Person


Task: Focus on a single person for about 30min.

Info: For today's task, we won't be observing objects, tasks, or ourselves.  Instead, let's direct our attention to a single person that is important to us.  Pretend you are a field scientist observing baboons on the savanna: what is the person doing?  What is the person wearing?  What facial expression is the person making? What is the posture of the person like?  What are they saying?  Don't stare at them or they'll catch on and think you are creepy.  Just watch them in an organic way as the two of you go about your day.

Goal: Maintain focus on the person of your choice for as long as possible.  Don't let distractions pull you away from your observations.  Don't weird the other person out.  Most importantly, do not create a story in your mind about what is going on in the other person's mind.  Just observe.

Next week, we'll start talking about the value of empathy and how adopting an empathetic mindset is important for building and fostering close, effective relationships.  Until then, let's just observe the behavior of another person as a first step in forming an understanding of them as another feeling, thinking human being.



Have fun!

Links: Return to the Week of Focus

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