INTRAPERSONAL SKILLS

What is intrapersonal? The term intrapersonal separates our inner functions and processes from the physiological functions of the physical body. Intrapersonal intelligence is understanding our inner domain and it leads to an ability to lead all our inner events at will.

In her scientific paper 'Developing Intra-Personal Skills as a Proactive Way to Personal Sustainability - The Preventative Side of the Mental Health Equation' our founder and mental wellness expert Dr. Lass writes that "in reality all humans possess an internal realm and experience intrapersonal events on a daily basis such as feeling emotions, learning, thinking, planning, focusing and leading our attention, having an ability to investigate, gaining an insight, etc." Intrapersonal skills can be seen in this context as a basic ability to direct different intrapersonal events within our inner domain.

Intrapersonal skills form the foundation of any successful career, yet are lacking in workplaces and the wider business world because of their total absence in current educational curricula.

INTRAPERSONAL SKILLS OPEN UP PROFESSIONAL SKILLS

What are the benefits of intrapersonal skills?

Intrapersonal skills open up our professional skills as they enable us to deal with all the processes that otherwise disturb our work within our inner domain (as the term 'mind' is quite narrow here), like lack of attention, constant inner reactivity to external events, lack of insight, etc.

Dr. Lass writes "By learning, training and directing intrapersonal skills, a vast amount of inner potential will open up, ultimately advancing our human capacity leading us towards better mental wellness." Only when one experiences mental fitness or has a fit brain, can one easily solve external problems, be creative and take initiative at work.

What is the meaning of intrapersonal skills?

We can define intrapersonal skills as the basic skills that open up all other skills. Much like learning to read: when one learns to read, many other skills and competencies can be developed as a result. Without intrapersonal skills, our own inner processes that lead to worry, stress and anxiousness remain a mystery that somehow 'happens' to us.

Dr. Lass writes in her scientific paper: "Being awareness-based, intrapersonal skills are the pre-requisites of a fulfilling life and more harmonious and sustainable society. We need to know how to deliberately direct awareness in order to learn effectively, differentiate lasting values from fleeting ones to support our choices for a meaningful life, and learn to individually connect cause with a consequence to become responsible citizens. One can contribute and reach goals considerably better if there exists know-how about the conscious application of awareness to effectively process data, orient in changing the environment, and become aware of and regulate one’s emotional as well as mental reactions."

Dr. Lass also states in her paper that "A structured approach to intrapersonal functions enables the entities that people describe as the mind, Self, awareness, subconscious, spirit, ego, etc., to obtain a clearer meaning and a practical reference." What it means is that we gain a practical understanding of how to direct different inner processes at will and thus become successful at taking personal responsibility and leading others and external processes around us.
 

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According to Ingvar Villido (Master teacher on awareness, Author and Founder of The Art of Conscious Change™ courses and several books), there are three main types of internal functions (the meta-functions) that every person needs to direct every day, but has not been trained to do so in school:

  • Awareness and intellect-related;
  • Mental and cognition-related;
  • Feelings and emotions.

Training intrapersonal skills help people to direct all their internal activities (activities within their mind) in a deliberate way. Intrapersonal skills examples are according to Villido the ability to direct one's awareness at will, the capability to observe and differentiate, the ability to access insights and intuition, etc.

TRAINING INTRAPERSONAL SKILLS HELP PEOPLE TO DIRECT INTERNAL ACTIVITIES IN A DELIBERATE WAY

Here are some examples that come along with intrapersonal education and having intrapersonal wellness:

  1. Holding focus (on the task at hand) as long as needed;
  2. Directing awareness/attention at will;
  3. Listening attentively;
  4. Purposeful thinking, analysis & problem-solving;
  5. Observing and gaining new knowledge;
  6. Cognitive-mental activities, planning;
  7. Good access to memory;
  8. Changing mindsets;
  9. Letting go of old belief systems;
  10. Leading your emotions and behavior at will;
  1. Adapting to changes easily;
  2. Discerning the important and being able to set priorities;
  3. Having access to insights and intuition at will;
  4. Access to inspiration;
  5. Using creativity and spontaneity;
  6. Aware decision making;
  7. Noticing the needs of the physical body;
  8. Self-leadership;
  9. Taking personal responsibility;
  10. etc.

 


WHAT IS AWARENESS?

Awareness (dynamic use of ‘consciousness’) in itself is not mental knowledge, emotions nor the body. Awareness is an ability to register what is going on, in the present tense. Awareness can be described as a connector between you and any chosen object (external object, like a pencil or an object on your computer screen; an internal object such as your thoughts or feelings). It is namely awareness that you sustain in a certain position when you want to focus on something. 

The arrow of awareness explained

Illustration of the arrow of awareness between you and the object information is shared with the kind permission by awareness teacher Ingvar Villido.

Being beyond the mind, awareness is the very thing we use to investigate the mind itself, among other things. As a universal agent for discovery, awareness forms the fundamental base for all intrapersonal skills.

All of us intuitively rely on awareness during unexpected situations but slip back to automatic default mode (so-called ‘autopilot’) for the rest of the time. This is a waste of human potential. Choosing awareness means to wake up from the autopilot of thoughts and conditioned emotional reactions – everything in life becomes more colorful, more real, acquiring sharper lines and aliveness.

HOW AWARENESS DIFFERS FROM MINDFULNESS?

Mindfulness is a term that refers to certain awareness practices that have been adapted from Buddhism into our modern world. Most mindfulness practices are passive in nature (for example witnessing, observing). 

In mindfulness, awareness is used to discover and monitor. The awareness practices that are today known under mindfulness highlight just one of the five modalities to use awareness. Most of the practices where awareness is applied in the active or in the dynamic form still remain to be discovered by modern societies. We are sure, that when the awareness practices in their active format become normal, those will rise as an elder brother or second pillar alongside the first pillar of the already well-known mindfulness. All Wellness Orbit intrapersonal wellness e-trainings promote such active use of awareness in our daily practice.

Once discovered, the use of awareness in its active form will empower people with the ability to initiate change. The first major change will take place in actively disengaging the autopilot mode – this gives us freedom from our inner automatic reactions. The second change is concerned with replacing the foundations of how one handles data. In essence, this means upgrading your brain's operating system from a mental train of thoughts to having instant insights. This enabling innovation and discovery, as it happened to Newton when he was sitting under the apple tree and gained a revolutionary insight after being hit by the falling apple.

THE CONNECTION BETWEEN AWARENESS AND CONSCIOUSNESS

When you become aware of your awareness  you have discovered your consciousness. Consciousness being itself static, is not of use in practical work/life situations. According to Ingvar Villido, it is your awareness that is its active form and builds the connection between yourself (subject) and an endless amount of objects in your inner world (‘mind’) and the world around you.

Let's bring some practical examples – it is your awareness that enables you to:

  • Notice the feeling of growing pressure;
  • Focus on the task at hand (even in an open office situation);
  • Observe where the ball is so that you can catch it during the ball came;
  • Notice the possibility to change lane on the motorway without disturbing traffic flow;
  • Notice your insights, intuition and creativity if it is trained so;
  • Become conscious and aware of your True Self. 

 


 

INTRAPERSONAL SKILLS AS A KEY TO MENTAL WELLNESS

Learning and training how to use your awareness forms the cornerstone of intrapersonal skills. This will enable you to overcome the limitations of passive mindfulness and mediation practices.

Active awareness practices highlight the application of awareness that you already possess, just in a much more deliberate and skillful way. There is no need to do sitting practices or take extra time to apply awareness – you will learn and train to use it during a presentation, while listening, or just completing your daily work behind the desk. Awareness also enables one to notice how to solve any kind of conflict or even helps to complete shopping efficiently.

Life is dynamic – always changing. Learning how to deal with changes within the mind and around us in the physical world leads to good mental wellness. However, awareness is the first step that enables one to discover, become aware of what is the cause of the problem within our mind or inner domain in the first place. Awareness and intrapersonal skills enable you to switch off the otherwise dominating autopilot mode and take full command over your own life and work. No more mind wandering or loss of track of what you need to do.

When you observe successful people, you will find that they have one thing in common – they are very attentive in their area of expertise as they use awareness on their area of expertise more extensively than others do. Expanding that principle is not only possible but desirable as it enables one to find how to be impeccable on any task. Not perfect, but doing the best you can under the circumstances that you face. That frees you from worry and regret.

The active use of practical intrapersonal skills in the workplace will lay a solid foundation for your professional excellence and business success.
 

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