If there is one thing that is most important to me as far as my well being, it’s being present. Not time traveling into the past dredging up crap or worrying about anything in the future. Just being here. Right now. So at the risk of being redundant, I would like to point out a few things to help.
First of all, you may not know or just forget on a continuous basis: You are not your thoughts!! You may be consumed by them, but they are still not you. I actually get a bit too involved in them myself sometimes still. But being aware of that fact that they aren’t you, can make all the difference. And awareness is the key there. Be aware.
Awareness is not exactly the same as being present, but it is pretty close, I think. I fee like awareness is is also including how you are inside and well as what is going on outside. Just my opinion. And I will be glad to discuss with anyone. Not argue, just talk. I am no expert…
Anyways, so 5 things to be more present:
- Focus on your current mission-ok maybe mission is a strong word, but as I have stated in the past, you should always do your very best in whatever you are doing. That means being focused and not mind- wandering to other things. Be completely immersed. This is for two reasons: the first obvious reason is the reason why I am writing this but the other reason is that when I am doing my very best at a task, when I am done, I feel very accomplished. That does wonders for a mood and a mindset.
- Look around you. If you are not involved in a mission, then just observe your surroundings. Watch the people walk by(but don’t judge), see the clouds, laugh at the squirrels, if you are talking a walk outside. Watch the kids play, listen to sounds around you. Don’t just be inside yourself, be outside and experience. There is always new.
- Breathe and listen– If you can’t seem to enjoy the world outside, then how about focusing on your breathing? You have to breathe, right? It is a constant. A rock. And always there for you when you need. So it can be depended upon. Just listen to it and leave everything else out of your head.
- Going to bed? Breath focus. Going to bed can be an aggravating time for some. All the thoughts of the past day going through your head, worries about tomorrow. But again-just breathe. Listen to your breath as your chest rises and falls. A busy mind is not easy to fall asleep. A calm mind sleeps comes much easier to.
- Practice, practice, practice. The only way you are going to good at something is practice. And for as long as you have not been in the present will make it more challenging to get there on a continuous basis. Once you get to present, doesn’t mean you will stay there, so just game play and don’t beat yourself up if you fall out of the present. Just be aware that you are worrying again or whatever and gently nudge yourself back to the present. No harm, no foul.
You can consider this as an exercise for your brain. Because it is. With practice, you will get better at being present and things will get clearer for you. You will see things differently because you are looking at things in the present, not shaded by past thoughts and experiences because that is the way the brain is supposed to operate(loosely translated).
So again know that you will enjoy life so much more when you see it without putting too much exteraneous meaning to it. Just experience.