A Date with the Senses

by Elizabeth on January 10, 2012

The human body gathers all of its information through one of five ways: Sight, Sound, Taste, Touch, and Smell.

(Some would say there’s a sixth, Intuition, but we’re talking about the physical right now.)

Most of us live our lives so incredibly disconnected that we barely notice the things around us, much less take in anything but unconsciously-gathered information from the world.  Sure, we know, spatially, that the desk is in front of us, and that it has mass, so if we run into it, it’ll hurt. We know that if we take a drink of the can of Diet Coke that’s closest to us, it’ll taste better than the one further away, that’s been there for a week.  We know that if the dog comes up beside us, and we pet his head, it’ll feel a certain way (and probably make the dog happy and quiet).

But that’s lizard brain thinking, folks.

The “lizard brain”, for anyone unaware, is that reptilian part of your brain that does things on autopilot.  It keeps you from getting hurt and causes all kinds of problems if it’s left to do the heavy lifting.  (We’ll get into that later this year, when we talk a lot more about risk-taking and fear, since the lizard brain is the king of all things fear-related.)

We’re not really experiencing those things.  Not fully, at least.  We’re not living our lives, because we’re not noticing them.

It’s time to smell the toast.

Rather than go into a great big DO THIS section, I whipped up a worksheet for everybody instead.  It’s a 6 page PDF, printable, that walks you through what daVinci called sensazione, or an appreciation and awareness of the senses.  Take a few minutes to play with it.  Paste it into your journal or shove it in a binder when you’re done.

(click the image to download the file.)

Cultivate your sensory awareness.

Make a date with your senses.  Wake ‘em up after all this time of being relegated to the backburner by the lizard brain.

When you’re done, come on by the forums and tell us what you’ve learned, too.  We’re having a blast over there, and you’d be more than welcome.

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