Being present can be challenging because so much of life is spent thinking about the past or future.
We think about things we said that were stupid. We wonder who we offended.
We’re hurt by how insensitive people are… and the list goes on.
And then there’s the future… the future we fear won’t be what we desire.
So, remember this…
“Yesterday is history. Tomorrow is a mystery. Today is a gift. That’s why we call it ‘The Present’.” ~ Eleanore Roosevelt
Yea, it’s one of those saying you’ve always heard, but it’s also a great affirmation.
You nourish the soul as you bring yourself into the present moment. Because you’re stopping long enough to just be. The soul enjoys this very much!
Being present in the moment.
Fretting about the past or worrying about the future can become a full-time occupation.
We don’t mean to do it!
But, we want to experience all of these wonderful things and we fear we won’t!
Oh, the things that can go wrong.
Oh, how we don’t have it in us… We fear we won’t be able to handle what MIGHT happen.
However, you get tired of this limited thinking because…
This is your life and these are your days… and you don’t want to waste them.
I don’t want to give them away.
Do you ever think something so wonderful?
I hope so.
Because when you spend your time worrying and thinking about other people’s problems, you’re not being present in the moment.
Or when you’re worrying and thinking about your own problems, you’re somewhere in the far-off atmosphere and not here.
You can spend many, many hours in that nowhere place and it’s a life drainer.
And you feel it when it’s happening.
But, you can’t pull back because you get pulled in.
Those constant thoughts.
Because the incessant thoughts kick in. For example…
Will I get all of this done?
Actually, I’m certain I WON’T get all of this done and if I drop one ball, everything is going to #%@.
Or even deeper thoughts…
What if I can’t have the life I want?
Oh, that’s a scary thought.
It’s those thoughts that keep you up at night.
When your mind goes there… there are two things you need: The ability to stop and breathe.
Again, the ability to stop and take a gentle, deep breath.
And the ability to quiet your mind, even if only for moments.
Here’s a quick and easy skill for being present so that you don’t spend your life focusing on the past or future.
Step One: Stop and Breathe.
Remember the fire drill you learned in elementary school?
Stop, drop and roll?
Instead, Stop and breathe.
When you feel yourself wandering from the present moment… Stop and breathe.
Step Two: Take a couple of minutes to notice.
This life skill of being present in the moment…
Well, it takes practice, so be patient with yourself.
So start small!
Just breathe for a minute or two and notice what’s around you.
Or, notice how you’re feeling.
This is a small act, but it’s more powerful than it seems because you’re showing yourself that you have the ability to stop what you’re doing and be present.
In Jon Kabat Zinn’s book, Wherever You Go, There You Are, he gives many fantastic mindfulness techniques.
Noticing when you’re not present… is mindful.
Being quiet throughout the day helps you be present.
You can pretend you’re in a yogi studio.
Not yoga… too much pressure there:)
One that you create in your car, your home, in nature…
Or in your mind.
Especially in your mind.
It’s that place where you can go and just be quiet.
Even if it’s for two seconds.
Two peaceful seconds where you don’t have to save the world.
Simple, but not easy.
Part of transforming in life, so you’ll be who you’re meant to be…
One part is practicing being present with what is happening.
It’s at the top of the list of… Simple, but not easy.
But, practice it a little bit each day.
When you catch yourself worrying…
Stop and breathe.
Then, notice what’s around you or what you’re feeling.
And remember, no matter who you’re helping…
Or who you live with…
Or who you want to BE THERE for…
This moment is yours.
You don’t have to give it away. Being present is reminding yourself throughout the day.
Why is being present so important?
Living in the present moment brings joy. Because we create our lives in the present moment.
It’s the only one we’ve got.
The present moment is where it’s at.
And having present moment awareness is key or we miss it.
Focusing on daily life consciously helps you feel connected to what’s happening in your life and increases your sense of belonging.
As you live in the now you nourish the soul.
Living in the present moment or “in the now” as people say is challenging because of the constant stream of thoughts, distractions, fears, etc.
However, as moment by moment, you choose to stay present, you are nourishing the soul, which is part of being a soulful person.
The soul is fed when we are present with the particulars of life. For example, good friends, good food, pleasant weather, great conversation, challenging ideas, stimulating conversation, connection to others, etc.
Being present or living in the present moment is an ongoing practice, so set your expectations that this takes some time.
As a self-love practice, you want to be patient with yourself as you’re building being present in the moment and with yourself.
You deserve some peace and quiet!