Observation is a broad aspect and has more power than we can understand. When you observe, you notice, analyze, create mental notes and images, and store the information. However, when you simply see, the mind is not at work and information passes through like a breeze, i.e. it touches your mind and fades away. It is the skill of observation that takes in scattered pieces of events and then builds links and connections to gain knowledge. It is this power of observation that sets apart the ordinary from the extraordinary.
The True Nature of Observation
It might seem like the phenomenon of observation is solely a mechanism of comprehension for the outer world. For instance, observation plays a great role in the world of psychology. Conducting experiments, noting down details, maintaining controls and so on, is a game of acute and keen eyes. Once the research is completed, it seems like the entire process was undertaken to inform the world about a particular variable and how it works. In reality, however, as much as the observation helped you understand someone else’s mind, it undid a few mental knots of your own. Hence, observation helps you break several shackles that hold back your mind.
Observation is the Key to the Mind
Leonardo Da Vinci is considered to be one of the most amazing and precocious minds of all time. His work was enveloped in skill and innovation, and was a display of his diverse talents. Can you guess one of the attributes that led to his unparalleled fame? It was his power of observation. The dominant theme of his work was saper vedere – ‘knowing how to see.’
Even though his motto places special emphasis on the work of the eye, he also believed in sensazione. Sensazione is an elaborate version of the term sensation. Leonardo adopted the word to indicate the process of utilization of the senses to enliven experiences. Observation is not a game only for the eyes; all of the senses become involved when you are mindfully observing something.
The Role of Patience in Strengthening Observation
Observation is powerful; it leads to transformation and control of mind while expanding the horizons of intellectual abilities. However, the cultivation of observation takes a great deal of practice. Art students are made to observe paintings for hours to understand their patterns and subliminal message(s) the artist tries to portray. Every art student concentrates on the image to unwrap its true essence. It is believed that the ability to concentrate and observe is propelled by patience.
So practice it. Take out ten minutes every day and make an observation. Take out time and engage in a similar activity for a period of at least ten days. For instance, watch the sunset and involve all of your senses in the activity. See the colors change when the sun is settling down, hear the chirping of the birds as they fly back home, smell the air as it changes direction, taste the wind as it welcomes the night time, and feel the day dawning away. Increase your power of observation and accompanied with it will be better imagination, attention, concentration, self image, knowledge, emotional stability and fulfillment.
The Realization of Dreams as you Observe more
Has there ever been a time when you really wanted an answer for something, and found yourself automatically stumbling upon it? Has there ever been a time when the book, effortlessly, turned to the page that helped quench your thirst for knowledge? When you increase the power of observation, you learn to control the brain, and unlock the relationship between the conscious and the unconscious mind.
You are directly or indirectly always looking for details that will help you move closer to achieving what you dream of. Even when you are consciously not looking for an answer, the unconscious actively seeks for answers related to your objectives. When the observational skills are exceptional, your journey towards your goals, dreams, or aims in life becomes fast paced.
Enhancing the Experience with Observations
Sharpen your unconscious and conscious lens by being mindful. With daily undertakings, try to avoid distractions. Pay a great deal of attention to the work at hand. Start with the food you eat. Pay a great deal of attention and savor every bite. Try to taste every flavor and bit of spice and enhance your experience. Hence, when being mindful, you indirectly build upon the observational power.
With greater observation skills you will have the advantage of looking beyond what meets the eyes. The thought process changes and you become accustomed to a higher perspective. With time, we evolve and our thinking skills are honed through the observations we make. Remember the time when we were young and innocent and thought that the best deal was what appeared to be good? When we saw someone laugh, it seemed as if they had no worries in life? Or when we met someone from an affluent background, we thought they had everything? It was only as time passed and we built our observation to learn that everything that glitters is not gold. Therefore, you go beyond the obvious with your power of observation.
Casual Observers against Expert Observers
If you are asked to observe and analyze the behavior of an individual, with great confidence – you would dish out your understanding of the events. The thin line that separates an expert observer from a casual one is the concept of ‘projection.’ Projection, a defense mechanism put forward by Sigmund Freud indicates the notion of projecting one’s own thoughts, feelings, and characteristics onto others. Even with a great reservoir of wisdom at hand, observations casually made are almost always tinted with projection.
It can be impeding to your mental growth. When projection interferes, a wall blocks you from understanding the true nature of things. To protect the self from hitting the mental wall learn to distance yourself, your thoughts and judgments from observations. No matter how much of an expert you might be at the art of distilling your observations of your own thought processes – there is always room for improvement. Remember, seeing is not observing!