My contemplation today was about a superpower I have come to realize I have. Don’t get too excited, I’m not going shopping for a cape or anything, because everyone has this same power.

It’s the ability to selectively turn on or off my awareness of context.

I’ll give you a bunch of practical examples, all from this morning.

First, as I showered I put on an Esperanto podcast, to see if I could understand it. I really couldn’t I could make out about every eighth word. That made me feel a brief stab of futility at the past couple of months worth of study I’d been doing.

Then I mentally fiddled with my context dial. I stepped back to see I have only been studying a few months. Since I started I have completed around 300 little Duolingo lessons. Roughly 80 hours of study. My friend Maddy and I now regularly text each other in the language.

Tio estas damne mirinda.

So, context matters. It’s good to stretch towards goals, and there’s no crime in my finding I’m not there yet for something I’m stretching for.

A bit later I get in the car and head for work I’m very proud of myself for getting out the door around 6:30, and feeling like a grownup what’s capable of doing all the grownupping what one can do.

As I drive, I make the mistake of missing my exit off the highway and wind up doing a nice little 18 minute or so detour.

I’m lamenting this on the phone with my girlfriend, MJ as I drive.

But I still manage to park at the office at 7:30, right on target.

As I review the drive and what I could have done differently, again I fiddle with my own perception of context. This time, I turn it basically off. People make mistakes, that’s human. But I did get out the door early, with having had breakfast too. I got to work exactly when I wanted.


As I walked in the door, both applications of context awareness struck me simultaneously, and started this contemplation.

I’ve known for years that I am not my thoughts. But this part is actually new to me. By treating my own mind like a tool, something I can use mindfully I can change my perceptions of myself and everything I do.


AuthorMako Allen