It is early morning. I haven’t had my coffee so I’m half awake and a little grumpy. The dogs are awaiting a treat and the lid on the antique glass jar is stuck. So, I decided a little tap on the counter would help. Actually, it was more of a frustrated, pounding on the counter than a tap. Glass shards and glass covered, dog biscuits went everywhere and blood began to drip from a cut on my palm.

Cathy, being the only adult in the room at the time, stayed quiet – very, very quiet – which sent a message to me. She was doing her very best to keep from saying “How smart are you? Or “How dumb are you?”

I felt embarrassed, stupid and totally infantile and ridiculous – rightfully so. However, at the same time, my Clarity training and focused thought began to kick in. After a few minutes I began to observe my actions, reactions and thoughts.

Factually, it was an incredibly stupid thing to do. Energetically, it was an opportunity to learn something here by being neutral and non-critical. Shifting my thoughts to observation, being not overly self critical, quickly neutralized my wasting too much time and mental energy in draining self judgment.

In the past my immature behavior would have expanded and infected my whole day. The anger I felt about myself would spread into the rest of my day. In the moment, I would have blamed the dogs and Cathy for making me open that damn, silly, jar. It really was the jar’s fault! At some point, I would have moved to deep, angry self criticism and stayed angry at myself for days while seeking and finding more and more examples of Stupid Gary.

Later in the day, I was able to laugh about the stupidity and use it as a lesson while teaching clients in a retreat about the energetic power of being the neutral observer. (There may also have been a little lesson about avoiding careless accidents.)

You don’t have to do your version of something truly stupid to use the power of being an energetic observer. The skill of tuning in to energetic signals and vitality clues in yourself and your environment is what we call high noticing. When you adopt the persona of the high noticing observer, you gather energetic signals from both the external and the internal. Those signals help you to remain conscious of your thoughts and energy so that you can, with awareness, change them to be more effective.

Although Cathy recognizes that I did learn and apply a thought changing lesson, I’m not sure she believes this will necessarily help me avoid doing something stupid in the future. She wants me to put this poster on the glassware cabinet.

Keeping body parts and thoughts effective,