The Great Wake Up: See the beauty in everything

Chris Baréz-Brown invites you to join us for a year where we stop operating on autopilot and start living a life full of joy and curiosity


The Great Wake Up: See the beauty in everything

When I am busy I rarely see the world around me in all its perfection. It’s all too easy to spend our time living in our heads and not connecting with the wonder of the world in which we live.

Today, slow down, take some deep breaths and make the time to deliberately see the beauty in everything around you. Pick out details that attract you and notice that when we put our full attention into any object, structure, landscape or person, there is always beauty to be appreciated.

What might seem mundane or unsightly will actually resonate with our consciousness at some level and make us feel more alive.

Alexandra Horowitz in her fascinating book On Looking: Eleven Walks with Expert Eyes (Scribner Book Company, £18.61) explains: ‘Part of what restricts us seeing things is that we have an expectation about what we will see, and we are actually perceptually restricted by that expectation. In a sense, expectation is the lost cousin of attention: both serve to reduce what we need to process the world “out there”.’

The more regularly you slow down and make this practice part of your daily life, the easier it will be for you to spot it without having to shift gears dramatically. By seeing more of what is beautiful around you, you will find that a sense of peace and gratitude will always be at your fingertips and therefore more often, you are waking up.

Start with just five minutes and see what you get from it.

Wake up now!

Author, speaker and Upping your Elvis founder Chris Baréz-Brown has teamed up with Psychologies to create a 12-month experiment to help us break our routines. We will introduce the experiments one by one each week and, at the end of the month, review the results. Follow the Great Wake Up! bloggers at

Photograph: iStock