Debbie’s Blog

ARE YOU LIVING IN THE PRESENT?

WHAT DOES LIVING IN THE PRESENT MEAN?

What does living in the present even mean? When you are in the present moment, your attention is focused entirely on what is in front of you, and what you are doing right now; this is how your life plays out. Too much of the time, we occupy our minds with past experiences or daydream about future ones which cause us to lose sight of what is before us—our lives.

So many of us have lived our lives in our heads rather than through experiences. One of the points I stress in my yoga classes is to let go of thinking how a pose should look and begin to experience how the pose feels. Noticing what a yoga pose feels like allows you to go within for the experience instead of looking outward, allowing you to be present.

The easiest way to discover how to live in the now is to visit your favorite park, river, woods, or another place in nature. Admire everything you see. Touch whatever is before you, feeling its texture: a gnarled tree, the smoothness of a blade of grass. Smell whatever scents there are: the air, the fragrance of flowers wafting, the earth.

Using your five senses brings you to the perfect present. Examine how you feel when you bring your awareness to the forefront and savor the beauty of God’s creations. Things you may have missed, such as the laughter of children playing, the birds chirping noisily, the warmth of the sun, or the brightness of a star, now penetrate your physical being making you feel alive.

When you are more present, your body relaxes, causing you to release stress. Stress occurs in your body when you don’t have relief in between continuous physical, mental, or emotional challenges, and can lead to harmful symptoms or diseases. Living in the moment, all thoughts of stressors are gone, because everything in the moment is taken care of; you have no issues, worries or problems.

Living in the present allows you to connect with people more fully by listening, letting go of past judgments, and improving your focus. They can sense when you are distracted by your surroundings and when you able to tune out interruptions, making them feel that you are really listening.

The more present you are, the more energy and creativity you have. Meditation is an excellent way to provide you with a deeper level of intuition and creativity; it opens up the channels within you and comes from the space between your thoughts, rather than thoughts themselves. By calming your mind through a meditation practice, you allow this space to be discovered.

If you are overwhelmed, stressed-out, and don’t know what to do, just breathe. Watch your breath as it enters your body, and watch it leaving. If you find yourself creating fantasies that haven’t happened yet, just breathe. If you find yourself in a state of mourning, grief, or resentment, just breathe.

Meditation is a practice, not a goal, and being more present in your life is the result of that practice. Set aside five minutes a day to start, then gradually increase a minute each day or two. Make a decision to notice new things in your life, especially using your senses. Remember, life is all about the journey (the present moment) and not the destination (the future).

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