Becoming the Observer – Mindfulness Practice
Becoming the observer requires that we do it in a neutral witness manner. It is not enough to just think about our self, any egotistical person can do that. If this were the case, the narcissist would be very self-aware when this is actually furthest from the truth. When the ego part of the mind thinks about our self it often does it with a sense of comparison. That part of the mind will compare us to someone else, or an idealized version we hold in our belief system. It is evaluating how well or how poorly we did something. It might even judge us for not being very spiritually aware. It is an egotistical thought that says we are not meditating enough or not doing enough mindfulness practices. While these may seem like observations, they are not. They are criticisms with an agenda. The result of which is that we feel worse.
When we act in the way of a neutral observer we notice different things. We notice when those thoughts are arising from parts of our ego and the emotions they produce. We can also notice the idealized version in the background of our mind being used as comparison. We might notice the idea that we could sit down and spend some time in quiet meditation, and then notice how our emotions, thoughts, and body reacts to that idea. As an observer we might notice negative thoughts rebut why it is not a good time, we are busy, or that we will be better served by exercising today. The Observer state of mind doesn’t see any of these rebuttals as a problem as that would have an agenda. It just notices these rebuttals as if it were a car driving by with an interesting paint job. If it were to think anything about them it would say, “I notice a rebuttal coming from other parts of my mind,,, interesting.”
Read this article for more on being the neutral witness observer