From Mindful Leader: The 4 Main Brain Systems Changed by Mindfulness Practices


The “Meta-Awareness” System: The networks for awareness of one’s sense of self, stories and patterns.


Function: Awareness of how your mind weaves your experiences into a narrative and constructs your mental model of your world.

Key Structures Enhanced: The dorsolateral prefrontal cortex (being aware of being aware).

Key Structure Regulated: The self-centering system: the default mode network (mind-wandering & self-narration), and the nucleus accumbens (attachment to “my-ness”, addictions and rewards.

Strengthening This System Corresponds To:

      • Effortless doing and present moment awareness
      • Ability to see and detach from one’s stories and patterns
      • Less mind-wandering and rumination
      • Less impulsiveness and attachment


Meta-Awareness Meditation:

Improves your ability to regulate the self-centering system.

Rest your awareness on the breath as it is.

When the mind wanders, note what your default mode network is bringing to your attention.

Without attachment, judgement or resistance, allow your conscious mind to acknowledge it.

Gently guide your awareness back to your breath.