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Noticing Myself

Noticing Myself is a Centering Skill. “Pause, what’s the cause?”


What am I noticing/sensing/feeling? Are my Protective Patterns being triggered?

Noticing Myself involves pausing and noticing, paying attention to the intelligence of our senses, emotions, and intuition. Noticing Myself involves asking ourselves some questions: What are we aware of that is happening in and around us? What emotions are we feeling? What is happening in my body and around me?” An important part of Noticing Myself is being able to recognize, name, and feel our emotions.


Why Noticing Myself — The Science

  • What we monitor and focus our attention on a key driver of neural connectivity that can enhance neuroplasticity in ways that deepen resilience. 
  • Neuroeducation can help us understand what is happening our the nervous system when we react to a threat in a way that got us into trouble.  It focuses on biology rather than pathology. 
  • Our emotions specifically and strongly influence our attention as well as motivating our actions and behaviors.
  • Our limbic system is where subcortical structures meet the cerebral cortex. It’s filled with neural pathways that activate our emotions in response to stimuli and controls our fight-or-flight response through the autonomic nervous system.
  • Learning, attention, memory, decision making, and social functioning are profoundly affected by emotion.
  • The first step to compassion is noticing, as we need to be open and receptive to what is going on to be compassionate.  


  1.  Lutz, A., Slagter, H. A., Dunne, J. D., & Davidson, R. J. (2008). Attention regulation and monitoring in meditation. Trends in Cognitive Sciences, 12(4), 163–169.
  2. Leitch, L. Action steps using ACEs and trauma-informed care: a resilience model. Health Justice 5, 5 (2017).
  3. Tyng, Chai M, Amin, Hafeez U, Saad, Mohamad N. M, and Malik, Aamir S. “The Influences of Emotion on Learning and Memory.” Frontiers in Psychology 8 (2017): 1454.  10.3389/fpsyg.2017.01454
  4.  Immordino‐Yang, M.H. and Damasio, A. (2007), We Feel, Therefore We Learn: The Relevance of Affective and Social Neuroscience to Education. Mind, Brain, and Education, 1: 3-10. doi:10.1111/j.1751-228X.2007.00004.x
  5.  Miller, K. “Compassionate Communication in the Workplace: Exploring Processes of Noticing, Connecting, and Responding.” Journal of Applied Communication Research : JACR 35.3 (2007): 223-45. Web

How to Practice-Model-Coach
Noticing Myself


  • Reflective noticing. Reflect on a time when you experienced an emotion in a strong way. What was that emotion trying to tell you? Can you identify a value that was crossed?  Can you notice your emotional triggers? 
  • After a really centered moment, reflect on the situation, too, so you can be aware of how that feels and what it took to get there, so you can reinforce the behaviors.
  • Noticing how you treat yourself
    • Notice when you are using negative words about yourself and others. Notice how that impacts you, how it makes your body feel, and how it affects your emotional state. 
    • Notice when you are using positive word about yourself and others, how that impacts you, makes your body feel and affects your actions and energy level. 


  • When you Notice Myself and verbalize it for others, they learn to be more aware of their own emotions.
  • “I am having a bad day. I feel really sad right now. I will feel better later.”


  • Talk to your family about your emotions and their emotions.  A common language will give them better understand how you are feeling and help them to talk to you about how they are feeling.

Resources for Noticing Myself




Tweens & Teens