By Goh Ruyin
Humans learn every day. Our brain is constantly processing old and new information, and making connections between them. As we gain experience, more information and activities that we engage in become familiar to us, and it takes less and less effort to understand and engage in these activities. The more familiar the task, the higher the chance of running on auto-pilot. We go into auto-pilot when we are doing very familiar tasks like brushing our teeth, but we are hyper-aware of our senses and actions when we are experiencing something new and novel, like skydiving in my case. When we visit our favourite restaurant but order the one-time special, we feel comfortable in the same environment, but titillate our taste buds with new flavours from an unfamiliar dish. All these activities and experiences fall into what I like to call the spectrum of consciousness. The amount of “consciousness” we experience is directly correlated with the amount of new information being fed into our brains.