an Integral Enneagram of Consciousness; a model of consciousness, including
all aspects, for designing practical
paths of personal development and evolution.
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Where crazy and conscious collide
Tuesday, January 7, 2014
"Process Design vs.
Hierarchies - Successful Structures"
Message From Ian:
Welcome to the first installment of The
To start the new year, we’re going to transcend and include
communication, and step deeper into practical paths of personal
development and evolution. This exploration is named after my model of
human consciousness; the Integral
Enneagram of Consciousness, or The Integram
for short. The model is only used as a framework or lattice for
understanding, and as I’m fond of saying, never mistake the map for the
territory. The journey will be interesting, useful, and fun as it
evolves and unfolds.
- Ian J. Blei
When we’re not happy with what we’ve done or said,
it’s usually because we reacted without a lot of thinking. The
difference between a thoughtless reaction and a thoughtful response is
huge. We developed reactions as part of our survival mechanisms, because
in dangerous situations, we don’t necessarily have the time to weigh
in the moment. When a bear jumps out from behind a tree, it’s not going
to serve us to take a moment to ascertain what the bear’s intentions
are, and what our best course of action might be. We need to bolt. In
fact, most of our reactions developed in accordance with survival and
Where this gets in our way, is in the modern world where we generally
have few physical threats, such as lions, tigers, and bears. Instead, we
face a daily barrage of what we could call “perceived threats.”
Perceived threats are very different than actual threats, except for how
we react to them. Our amygdala still gets stimulated, and we have the
or fight reaction, where neurochemicals and hormones replace thinking
Most people are pretty familiar with this sustained flight or fight
state of mind having negative effects. Just how many negative effects,
and how pervasive they are may surprise you. The physical damage has
been well documented over the years, including everything from stress
related cardiac issues to Cortisol-induced weigh gain. What’s far less
obvious, and far more insidious is the emotional and psychological
impact, including damage to our relationships and communication with
Never Saw It Coming
An Although we may think we’re pretty conscious of what’s going on, what
we’re saying and doing, and how we’re going about that, an enormous
amount of what drives us is under the surface. Just like an iceberg, the
tip may be visible, but what’s driving that iceberg is the vast amount
of it unseen below. This is our subconscious and unconscious mind; and
the power behind reactivity.
If only our subconscious communicated with us the way our conscious mind
does. Well, it does communicate with us, but it uses a very different
way to do so. Our subconscious and unconscious mind speaks to us through
our bodies. Our body may understand words, but it uses the language of
somatics. Some of these signals are loud enough and obvious enough for
us to hear them. We know we get stomach aches, backaches, and headaches
when we’re under stress, but what if we could understand what our bodies
are telling us on a more specific level? Psychosomatic illness is
an exaggerated version of these cues. By not paying attention to what
our body is telling us, it becomes more and more adamant, until we
literally become sick. If we can become exceptionally aware of this
somatic language, we can become conscious of what was formerly only in
the realm of the subconscious mind. Awareness is the first step.
This process uses a kind of “active listening,” just as we use when we
want to really hear what someone is saying. Your body tells you all
kinds of things that would be useful if we heard them. A sense of
tightening in the jaw or the throat might signal that you’re holding
back something you need to say. A sense of not being able to breathe
might be your subconscious telling you that you’re being suffocated by
something. I actually had a client who’s asthma got much better once she
made several changes in her career and relationship. If you notice low
back pain flaring up when someone is yelling at you, it could very well
be your subconscious telling you that you’re not standing up for
The Conscious Component
Your conscious mind communicates primarily through
words, so unless we specifically learn the somatic language of our
bodies, there is a break in the circuit of communication between
conscious and subconscious. The result of this is the tip of the iceberg
being upset and confused by what the massive subconscious is doing, and
having no ability to communicate a preferred course back to the body.
By learning the somatic language of the body, we can then use cognitive
linguistics to talk back to the body, and affect course corrections and
real change. We can break habitual reactions, and replace them with
thoughtful responses when we achieve a real two-way dialog. We can hear
our body give us a somatic cue that’s like the backswing or the wind-up
before the reaction, which gives us that moment to pause and insert a
pattern interrupt. That pattern interrupt can be a cognitive linguistic
command directing us toward a thoughtful, mindful response which will
serve us strategically and well.
Even when it’s just inside our own head we can make a difference. Self
talk is a vast and powerful sea of opportunity for you. Those of you who
know me have most likely played with the shift from the words “I’ll try”
to the words, “I will do the best I can.” If you haven’t experimented
with this, give it a shot. You’ll notice a distinct shift in your
physical posture as you make a commitment (I will) a goal of quality (do
the best) and an affirmation (I can.) Your body understands the
difference in the words. Completing this circuit, and creating a dialog
between our conscious and subconscious reduces regret, confusion,
illness, and depression, and gives us an enormous boost in self-control,
self-confidence, and abilities.
Want to learn more about how to become the best you possible?
Come visit the
or better yet,
contact me and see how we can design a program to fit your needs and desired outcomes.
- Ian J. Blei
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A New Year
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- the podcast series
Melissa Risdon's Raving Fan Radio Show:
Ian Blei on the
ourselves, each other, and our relationships
KG Stiles: "Conversations that Enlighten and Heal"
Ian Blei on Kind Ambition and the
visit the Blog.
Ever want to create
characters that were so believable, that people forgot they were
Subscribe to the Integram
Welcome to the Integram, where consciousness meets
Institute for Integral Enneagram
Without Losing Your Soul
about you having
the tools to slide over to the
driver’s seat of your
Circumstances will always be
changing, seemingly thwarting
our plans, but we don’t have to be
thrown around by them. You can
charge of your choices and actions more than you might imagine - yet.
is written for you,
as a practical guide you can
right now. It is a collection of
insights and actions designed to help
you move forward and get more out
of your life at home and at work.
The chapters hold to a formula of
first giving you a new way to look at
things, then offering you tangible
Action Steps to try them out, and
finally some things to notice when you do.
Kind words for
"If you are interested in success, whether it is in running a large
organization, a small business, or leading a satisfying life, you will
find a right blend of rules, wisdom and wit in a digestible fashion that
will serve to accomplish your objectives. The notion that kindness can
be blended with ambition and made to work and serve the "bottom line" is
enlightening, uplifting and satisfying."
-Steven Kiefel – CEO, Red Pill Media
“An easy to use guide for anyone who wants to
growth and success. His sensible and practical tactics
solve age-old challenges with real, how-to solutions. Best of all, Ian
lives his work!”
-Romanus Wolter -
Author: Kick Start Your Dream Business
Success Coach Columnist: Entrepreneur Magazine
Radio Host: Syndicated Kick Start Guy Segment
We all face obstacles in our lives and careers. Some of these come from within, subverting our conscious intentions. The
good news is: they can be overcome. The techniques and processes found in this book will help you on your way."
-Margaret Heffernan – Author: The Naked Truth: A Working Woman's
Manifesto on Business and What Really Matters
Syndicated Columnist: Fast
scientifically-based, spiritually-awake, (and smart and funny) guide to
making the most of your life. Ian Blei provides the know-how, the
inspiration, the structure and all the tools you need in this
-Lisa Betts-LaCroix, Past
President of SF Coaches
Star of Unapix film,
“Dance Me Outside”
Ian Blei shares his deep insights in simple and straightforward
ways. His work continues to inspire me whenever I feel I'm getting stuck in some area of my life."
-Roy King, III
Pacific Development Partners