INSPIRATIONAL: Meditation to defeat a VUCA (Volatile, Uncertain, Complex, Ambiguous) world

The Well
How to unlock your “peak mind”

  • “What you pay attention to, is your life.” Where do you place precious brain resources?

Amishi Jha

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There’s a shorthand that we can use to think about this. The term is VUCA: Volatile, Uncertain, Complex, Ambiguous. The world today feels like it’s a constant VUCA environment, but there’s another challenge that our attention faces, and why many of us feel like we’re in an attentional crisis. Frankly, the brain was designed to be lured by, for our evolutionary success and survival, certain kinds of information; threatening information novel information, self-related information, and even things that are fun and enticing. I’m talking about the ‘Attention Economy.’ Everything is being done by teams of engineers to actually capture your attention and keep it there; your attention is the product. Finally, the mind can be hijacked away by something called ‘Mental Time Travel.’ That means that our attention is not in the present moment, so when we’re thinking about the past, our attention is fully in the past, same thing with the future. About 50% of our waking moments, we aren’t in the present moment.

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When I first learned about “meditation” in Comparative Non-Christian Religions  — yes, I got another D  — I thought it was a lot of “Barbara Streisand” <synonym for excrement>.  Later, when I was in USAF survival school, we were encouraged to practice it for when we became a POW  — luckily I never left Maryland.  But, the lessons kept being repeated to me.  “Lessons in life will be repeated until they are learned.”  — ― Frank Sonnenberg, Soul Food: Change Your Thinking, Change Your Life Not sure when I began to take “mindfulness” seriously; I do now.




― Frank Sonnenberg

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