I realize that everyone is different and you can lead a horse to water but you can’t make it drink.

I have often wondered why some people fail to notice cabinet doors they’ve left open, stuff they’ve dropped on the floor or stains on their clothes, just to mention a few things that drive me nuts. Are observational skills commiserate with brain chemistry, a behavior that is taught by parents, or a little of both? Can someone who is completely oblivious to their surroundings be taught to observe through behavior modification?
It seems that the answer lies somewhat in the chemistry of the brain.” According to the Personal Productivity Exchange how you observe the world around you has been linked to norepinephrine and dopamine levels. With low norepinephrine and dopamine, you are more confused and all over the place, unable to direct your attention.With high norepinephrine and dopamine you are supposedly gifted with more attention including small details.”
According to the above mentioned site one of the ways you can boost your neurotransmitters is by taking drugs like amphetamines, Ritalin, Cocaine, etc., however that is definitely not a good choice. Physical exercise which has been found to release endorphins and a host of other beneficial chemicals would be a great choice. However, this is not the whole enchilada. You just can’t ride a bike everyday and expect to end up being like Sherlock Holmes. It also takes some cognitive behavioral therapy and mindfulness methods. Learning how to be more observing takes effort and many individuals don’t want to put in the effort, nor is it something they care about.
As a parent I remember having to become part parrot. I repeated myself continuously about clothes on the floor, wet towels on the bed, dishes in the sink. I’m sure my children wanted to pluck my feathers out one by one. It must have paid off because they’re all pretty neat and organized. I believe how you’ve parented is incredibly influential. My mother would not tolerate me being slovenly. I truly respect her for that, especially after seeing how some people live. I like my home to have a certain neat vibe. However, I can’t seem to segue into that behavior with a lot of my paper work.
I realize that everyone is different and you can lead a horse to water but you can’t make it drink. But, the greatest aspect of learning how to notice the world around us rather than just the world we’re in, is that it makes it easier on others. It has become even more difficult in todays world because of the constant assault on our attention from our gadgets. But that excuse is really getting tiresome. If you can begin to pay attention to your surroundings you just might allow whoever you live with not to have to be the concierge of your life. Consider this: They just might not want to spend the precious moments of their life picking up after you.

About lorettalaroche

An international stress management and humor consultant whose wit, and irreverent humor, has, for over 30 years raised the humor potential in all of us. She is on the Mass General advisory council for anxiety and depression and was recently awarded the National Humor Treasure Award. Loretta writes a weekly newspaper column called, 'Get a Life'.
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