Professional Development
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Professional Development

Sometimes we just don’t know what we don’t know, and, because of this, it is always important to take courses to enhance our knowledge and skills.


Last week I had three days of inspiration through the International Institute for Trauma and Addiction Professions (IITAP) Symposium.  One of the keynote speakers was Dandapani.


This man was raised in Australia and then trained as an electrical engineer. Following this he lived for ten years in a cloistered monastery in Hawaii as a Hindu monk.  He moved to New York after his vows ended and worked with professionals to teach them the principles that he had learned so they could understand and leverage their minds.  Now he and his wife live in Costa Rica where they are creating a Hindu spiritual sanctuary and botanical gardens.


Dandapani presented important concepts to the Symposium registrants that included the relationship between our minds and awareness.  We think that we can control our minds, but we really can’t.  We can only control where we will focus our awareness and that takes practice. 


The mind, according to our speaker, is like a mansion with many rooms, each of which has different memories.  We move our awareness into these rooms and, if we prevent distractions from interrupting the process, are able to learn how to experience a purposeful life.  Clarity, priorities and purpose can be realized when we take the time and energy necessary to concentrate in the manner that Dandapani teaches.


Following Dandapani’s teachings we will be able to create patterns in the subconscious.  He stated, “Where awareness goes, energy flows”.  In his life of serious personal discipline in the monastery Dandapani learned that willpower is really just effort acted out in three important steps.  These are:  1) finish what you begin; 2) go beyond expectations; and 3) do more than you think you can.


Dandapani explained this method using a simple example.  The way to finish sleeping is to make the bed.  He ensures that he does this so that it matches the standards of a fine hotel.  Then he folds the blanket in a manner that might seem to be well above expectation. 


I have been following the three steps over the past days and realize the wisdom of this practice.   When I leave an area, it is pristine and there is a mental closure that gives me peace.


Another lesson taught by this man involves the importance of living in the present.  Those who tend to create scenarios in their heads about the future experience fear and worry and those who allow their awareness to jump from one project to another find that their anxiety builds.  The lesson:  practice focusing in the present and completing one thing before moving to the next.  These are choices!


If you are interested in listening to Dandapani just go to TedTalks on YouTube where he is one of the most viewed speakers on their platform.  (And remember to focus on the video without distractions) 😊


And thanks for reading this article without letting your attention wander!

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