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The Consciousness Chart: A Journey of Self-Discovery

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The Consciousness Chart


In the Trails to Empowerment community we frequently use the Consciousness Chart to increase how conscious and aware we are. We use it to assess where we are in a particular moment and what we feel is our “base level”, the level we operate at when nothing particularly good or bad is happening. As we support our community partners in their personal development, when we become aware that they are acting from the low levels of the Consciousness Chart, we can remind them to take a look at the Chart and they can then use this as a way to move themselves back to a positive mindset. Let’s take a look at what being conscious means in this context.

Victim and Abuser Mentality

The Consciousness Chart is a spectrum broken into three groupings. The lowest level is when you are at your least conscious. This includes emotional states such as shame, guilt, apathy, grief, fear, desire anger and pride in order of least conscious to more conscious.

People who operate on this level come from a place of lack. This means you have the mentality of “If I can’t have it, no one can” which means if you aren’t happy, empowered or anything else you desire, you don’t want anyone else to be either and may even actively make other people’s lives miserable. You also use the principle “An eye for an eye, a tooth for a tooth”. So if someone acts angrily to you, steals something or hits you, you will respond in kind. A bar fight is a good example of this low level of consciousness.

This grouping on the consciousness chart is where the victim mentality is displayed. These people believe they have no control over their lives, that both good and bad things happen to them because of other people or external circumstances and they are powerless to change them. People in this category also display an abuser mentality, it is a survival state and so these people will use others to get what they want. 


The middle level has emotional states such as courage, neutrality, willingness, acceptance and reason, again in order from least to most conscious. This is the stage where you are becoming more conscious and aware and have more agency to make changes in your life, believing change comes from within and so is possible because of your mindset. This level can be summarized as “everyone and everything is inherently good”. This means you are able to see the good in everything and are also more independent of others.

This stage is categorized as self-empowerment as people realize they aren’t dependent on others to survive or be happy. This is similar to Maslow’s hierarchy level esteem. In the Trails to Empowerment community, living in this grouping of the Consciousness Chart or higher allows us to be more productive and have a positive, supportive community.


The highest level of consciousness has emotional states such as love, joy, peace and enlightenment. This grouping can be characterized as “Your joy is my joy”. This is because you are most joyful when other people are too, regardless of whether you have had any part in creating this joy. This doesn’t mean you only experience joy when those around you are also joyful. You are joyful in and of yourself without any external stimulus, but you know that everyone is connected and the greatest joy comes in collective joy.

This is the group level where you can achieve the most and are the most successful on your journey of personal growth as you operate from a desire to contribute to others, your actions align with your values and principles and you know the world is good. This stage is known as self-realization and spiritual. This is similar to Maslow’s hierarchy level of self-actualization.

You don’t have to be constantly in the highest level to be conscious and aware and just because you sometimes get angry or feel shame doesn’t mean you aren’t progressing on your personal development journey. When you are conscious and aware, you are able to access a full range of emotions, but know how to appropriately express them, you also doesn’t get stuck in a negative emotion. Once the stimulus that triggered the negative emotion is gone, you don’t dwell on those feelings or the event but learn from the experience and move onto the next thing.

If the content you have seen on our Trails to Empowerment website resonates with you, you are likely already in the self-empowerment or self-realization levels of the consciousness chart. Enhance your personal development and consciousness by joining us through a trip, training program or internship. Join us!