Welcome to the World of Conscious Living
Monday, April 1, 2002
by: Annie R. Thoe, GCFP

Section: Introduction

When I think of functioning fully, I think: “How can this person experience becoming more alive?” I find this question leads me and my clients into uncharted territory and great creativity.

Somewhere from their talking and gesturing, I must find a way to identify their desire to be more alive and functioning at a higher level. I look at the space they occupy and wonder where they are comfortable living and what directions to explore to deepen their vitality.

This is the beginning of the lesson and yet, I find this is the middle and the end as well. It is my belief that this Method is about becoming more alive every moment.

One of my clients, Ellen, who’s had chronic back and neck pain for many years, recently broke through a barrier in her awareness and in her abilities. I’ve worked with Ellen for four years every other week, but this week was different. Ellen came in with a contented smile. This is the first time she ever smiled when giving me a report about her life, saying, “I should be in pain after the stressful two weeks I’ve been through, but thanks to you and my therapist, I feel fine. I sat for 12 hours at the computer almost every day working on a stressful case and my back doesn’t hurt.” I asked her what made the difference.

She said, “I could never have done this before. First of all, I was committed to doing my work for my own satisfaction. This commitment felt new and different. I worked the entire weekend! For the first time I can remember, I was not worrying about doing anything else or wanting to be anywhere else. I could just be where I was.” “Secondly, I was able to sit using my bones for support. But more importantly, there was an awareness in the background. I didn’t abandon myself.”

This last sentence summed up one of her life lessons and her greatest achievement. She didn’t need me to tell her how great she was for learning this or to pat her on the back for being a good student. She knew how to take care of herself even in a very stressful situation and had gained confidence. She knew how to be present with her self in a mature and caring way and to not neglect her comfort and support.

We both looked at each other eye to eye. Awareness to awareness. Ellen was alive and living her life with a conscious vitality. She was choosing where and how she used her attention, how she supports herself physically and emotionally. At that moment, I marveled at this amazing potential we all have to be awake, aware and creative.

Ellen’s story welcomes us to the world of conscious living.
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