Some of the favorite things I teach in my classes are daily habits to build your awareness. You have the ability to be more aware of your surroundings already and it doesn’t require any money, anyone else helping you or any fancy training. Because all you have to do is start practicing.
This is a game you can play in your head, with your friends and even with kids! At an event-say a meeting or going to the park-try and see how many of the following questions you can answer.
- What is the general mood of the place?
- What is one thing that sticks out to you?
- What is the normal activity you would expect to see here?
- What would cause someone or something to stand out?
At first, you might feel like you are constantly scanning and staring at people, but eventually it will become second nature.
Our friend Andy, over at The Secure Dad podcast, shared a game he plays with his kids when they go out to eat. He calls his game, “Count the doors”. Andy asks them to count the doors in the restaurant. This helps keep them busy, works on their counting skills, and subconsciously helps them realize there are multiple options for getting out of the restaurant.
A great skillset to build with the A-game is mastering your memorization. After you’ve left an event or place, see how many details you or others can recall.
- How many people were there?
- If you interacted with anyone, what was their mood?
- How did they respond to you?
You can play this game immediately after you’ve left somewhere or at the end of the day. Whenever you have a moment. As you build this skill, you will find it easier and easier to recall details from events that happened not only earlier in the day, but even earlier in the week or month!
You’ve probably heard that eyewitness accounts are not always reliable. Two people can be looking at the same thing and come away with very different impressions and memories. That’s why I recommend picking ONE THING to remember about people. What is the first thing you notice about someone when you meet them?
- Their haircut or style
- A tattoo
- A piece of jewelry such as earrings, a bracelet or a watch
Practice noticing that ONE thing with everyone you meet. Even if you’ve known someone your whole life, what is the first thing that stands out to you?
Now-don’t try to do all these exercises at once! You may end up feeling overwhelmed or look like a suspicious person yourself because you’re staring at everyone. Pick one habit to work on every day and soon you won’t even realize you’re consciously practicing it.
The best part? You’ll start being more present in your daily life and your personal relationships will benefit.
“Forget perfect on the first try. In the face of frustration, your best tool is a few deep breaths, and remembering that you can do anything once you’ve practiced two hundred times.”
― Miriam Peskowitz, The Daring Book for Girls