Consciousness/awareness or living consciously is a very, very central concept in Personal Development and perhaps one that people ignore. The essence of it is to make conscious choices rather than making those choices unconsciously, due to habit, or letting someone or something else make those choices for you. Conscious living is based fundamentally on a sense of personal responsibility.
“Everything in your life is a result of your previous choices, whether conscious or unconscious, and thus, everything in the future will be a result of the current and future choices, conscious or unconscious.”
Go back and read the previous sentence carefully. Notice how you feel when reading it. Do you go, “Damn straight!” Or do you skim through it quickly because you don’t really want to read it. Or do you resist it and say, “no, there was a whole bunch of that stuff that I couldn’t control that happened to me.”
The first response is an example of fully accepting responsibility for your life. The second is starting to get there. You’re uncomfortable with the idea. But you’re reading this, so that’s a good sign that you will probably progress to the first response and agree with the statement above. If the last response was yours, then you’ve probably already stopped reading this and you are denying your power in life.
Conscious living, is, essentially, making conscious choices about your life. Did you consciously decide to watch that tv show when you got home from work/school? Or did you just come home and plop down in front of the TV without thinking about it. Do you think you could think of something better to do than watching TV or that particular show? Something more enjoyable, even. Is your life running on an unconsciously-set autopilot?
How about the job you have now, or the people you spend the most time with, or why you’re in school? Did you make conscious decisions based on the merits of each one, or did you simply “go with the flow” or went where the wind blew you? Are you sure that’s the most effective way to live life?
How’s about your money, do you spend it consciously, or do you find it seems to just bleed away when you aren’t looking? This doesn’t mean watching every penny, but do you really know where your money is going? Have you consciously setup boxes of expenses and put aside some money for investing and saving for the future?
Digging deeper, what about some of your beliefs. Do you believe rich people are all greedy and immoral? Did you consciously choose that belief based on interactions with rich people? Or did someone just impose that belief on you when you were too small to be able to critically judge it?
Acceptance of personal responsibility, like I said before, is part of the essence of conscious living. It is recognizing that this is YOUR life and that if YOU don’t do something, it just ain’t going to get done. You won’t magically end up rich and successful. Sure, there’s luck, or people in better positions, or what have you, but there’s also people who are in much worse positions than you who rose to accomplish great things. It is accepting that anything another human being with your abilities can do, so can you! And that is highly empowering.