≡ Menu

Engagement: Eight Stages of Experience #6

This stage is about being fully engaged with what we are doing.

Seeing what the qualities of our focus of interest are, how it works – studying each part and seeing how they relate to each other and the whole. This process also means finding out how what we are engaged with fits with us.

This process can take anywhere from seconds (say drinking a glass of water) to years or a lifetime (perhaps investigating a philosophy or spiritual tradition, or a relationship).

At this stage we are focussed entirely on what ‘it’ is.

We lose a sense of ourselves and become fascinated with what we are investigating – what ‘it’ is, how ‘it’ works, how ‘it’s’ put together, what ‘it’ can do and what ‘it’ can do for me. These are those times when we look up and discover that ‘time has flown’. Although we have been ‘working’ very hard we can feel curiously refreshed and satisfied as well.

This stage ends when we have a sense of what the ‘thing’ is and have made it a part of us (drunk the water, taken what we can use from the philosophy or spiritual tradition, crafted a way of relating to the other person).

At this stage being concerned with ourselves and interests will interfere. We need to be able to focus fully.

However this is different to being obsessive. When we get obsessive it is usually because we are keeping something else at bay – the obsessiveness is fighting against something.

When we are genuinely fascinated by something our interest has a relaxed quality.

The best picture I know is a craftsperson lost in their creating – you will see that their shoulders aren’t tight, that they are completely focussed and relaxed at the same time.

For Reflection
What ‘things’ fascinate me?
What do I back to over and over again?
What have I explored thoroughly, so that I have a good sense of its parts and the whole thing?
What things capture my attention at the moment which I would like to explore?
Do you tend to get obsessive?
About particular things?
Do you have a sense of what you may be fighting against?

The other articles in this series are:

Rest: Eight Stages of Experience #1

Rest Disturbed: The Eight Stages of Experience#2 

Looking Around: Eight Stages of Experience #3

Focussing: Eight Stages of Experience #4

Beginning to Act: Eight Stages of Experience #5

Satisfied? Eight Stages of Experience #7

Growth and Learning: the 8th stage of experience.

I'm Evan Hadkins. To find out how to live a more satisfying life you can download my manifesto on living authentically. It is a book of exercises to guide you to finding, nourishing and living from the core of who you are.

If you would like me to write about some aspect of living an authentic life please don't hesitate to get in touch. There is a box in the sidebar where you can leave a question anonymously if you wish, or you can email me, use the contact page, or comment on this post.

Share on FacebookShare on Google+Tweet about this on TwitterShare on LinkedInShare on StumbleUpon
{ 0 comments… add one }

Leave a Comment

CommentLuv badge