Awareness – Two

Meyer Friedman was born in 1910. He graduated with a medical degree from John Hopkins in 1935. He and Dr. Ray Rosenman formed a clinical practice with a specialty in cardiology.

The waiting room in the clinic had chairs that needed to be reupholstered. When Dr. Friedman looked closer at the chairs, he discovered that the chairs had unusual wear on the front of the seats and on the armrests. That was unusual since the wear was normally on the back of the seats.

The chairs increased an awareness of patient behavior. Dr. Friedman noticed that their coronary patients would often sit on the front edge of the chair and would often rise from their chairs due to their impatience. Dr.’s Friedman and Rosenman hypothesized that the patient’s behavior was a contributor to their heart condition.

After a number of studies, Dr.’s Friedman and Rosenman developed the concept of Type A behavior and its impact on heart health.

As is the case of many medical innovations, the concept of Type A (and Type B) behavior was initially viewed with skepticism by the medical community. But it was accepted by popular culture.

What Dr. Rosenman did was practice something that is often in rare supply in our society today. That is the practice of awareness. All of us have had the experience of suddenly seeing something for the first time that we should have been aware of much earlier.

Why is that? Often we are blinded by familiarity. That was probably the case of the chairs in the clinic. It wasn’t until they needed to be reupholstered that the chairs were seen as a medical clue.

There are other times when we don’t want awareness to create doubt in our minds. Often we only read or listen to points of view that support what we think. We are building an awareness shield.

Then there is the familiar excuse of “I’m too busy.” This awareness excuse is one of an awareness band-aids. Rather than stepping back and alerting our awareness, we are comfortable with band-aid solutions.

Finally, we fail to practice awareness when we mute our senses. We fail to pick up on the clues our brain is delivering to us through our senses.

How do you overcome these awareness failures? One way is to select one thing each day you want to focus on. Capture the thing in your subconscious mind and let your mind lead the way. You will find that this unconscious focus will open up your awareness to new insights.

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“Awareness allows us to get outside of our mind and observe it in action.” – Dan Brule (author)

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