Metacognitive Awareness


Fully Present by Susan Smalley and Diana Winston is a fun and fuzzy book that sporadically shifts gears between neuroscience and mysticism. From Chapter 6 ("Feeling Bad: Dealing with Negative Emotions"):

... Meta-cognitive awareness refers to a de-centered relationship of self to thoughts and feelings—the idea that you can be a neutral observer of your own experiences, whether these are sensory experiences or thoughts or feelings. Many terms are used to describe this meta-cognitive stance. We have already used the words "de-linking" and "disidentification"; others use terms such as "reperceiving," "de-centering," "defusion," and "distancing." Still others use terms such as "detached discerning ability." More descriptive terms for the attentional stance of a person witnessing his or her own experiences include "impartial spectator," ... and "unentangled participation" ....

Oops! — lots of jargon there ... but perhaps, with a bit of structure and sensibility, it might become part of a useful lexicon of metacognitive mental modeling — and maybe, with a dash of humor, be a finger pointing toward zen master Ikkyu's Mantra - Attention, Attention, Attention!

(for other quotes from Smalley & Winston see Rebalancing Doing and Being (2011-02-28), Breath and Awareness (2011-03-12), Come SAIL Away (2011-11-26), Models of Happiness (2012-01-05), Equanimity (2012-02-01), Emotional States (2012-04-26), ...) - ^z - 2018-05-19