You have had a day full of confusion and disorder and you want to bring some peace and calm in it?
There is one thing you can do that immediately sorts things out - find out how to live in the present! This skill is super easy to explain, although it is not so easy to implement because it requires practice.
Being present in the here is now is one of the most outstanding, life-changing tools that is always at your disposal. It doesn't matter how difficult your day has been, how stressful and unmanageable your job is. The sense of being present can be your safe harbor, your peaceful abode.
Some of the reasons why people fail to have a peaceful day are given here:
Note that in the above examples, almost all problems are related to the state of mind people have. That's why all of them can be solved by simply being present.
Even though in some of the examples there are outside forces at work (stress, other people, unexpected interruptions), the problems are still in your mind. Because, in reality, the problem is how your mind handles the outside impulses.
If you live entirely present and conscious of the here and now, the external factors are no longer an issue. You are present and the external factors are present, but there are no additional thoughts, plans and other things that you usually worry about.
For example, if you live in the present and you get interrupted by your kid, there will be only you and your kid. You will be able to appreciate your mutual interaction, and be thankful that you can enjoy that moment with them.
You can be under a lot of stress at your work because there are many task that need to be done and not enough time. But, you can choose to eliminate the stress if you do only one thing at a time, fully aware of the present moment and focused on the task at hand. Once you have finished, you can select another task.
The same logic applies with the internet and social media. Find out how you can be completely absorbed into just one task, either checking email, surfing the net, or interacting on Facebook. Set everything else aside and be totally present and focused on just one thing until it is done.
Thus, being present is the best tool for solving any problem, interruption or distraction. Being present means being fully yourself and dealing with that ONE thing here and now.
To be present is both very simple and extremely complicated. What matters here above all other things is practice. Not theory, but pure practice.
People are not capable to live in the present, not because it is a difficult process, but because they don't practice that skill enough.
If you want to be good at something, you have to practice it regularly. With practice you ingrain that thing into your own being, instead of putting it on your to-do list.
No matter what you are doing right now, focus all your energy, all your attention on that one thing. Not only that you pay attention to what you are doing, but you also monitor your body, thoughts and emotions at the same time.
If you do this right, after a while you will notice that your thoughts are trying to jump to something else, something new and totally different. That's a natural tendency, there is nothing wrong with it and you should not resist or fight with these new thoughts in your mind. Just be aware of them for several seconds, and slowly and gently get back to the task at hand.
Repeat this as many times as you have to, but do that with love and patience. Don't force anything.
It may be a process that you will find somewhat tiresome at the beginning. It is very normal to feel like that and if you are tired, take a break and relax, for as long as you need to. Later on, when you have trained your mind, you will see that being present and living in the here and now is a very enjoyable and refreshing practice.
Life is a gift, and without living in the present you cannot fully enjoy it. You should be thankful for every moment you have been given, and appreciate every single aspect of your task at hand. Be it a tactile sensation, a movement of your hands or a visual beauty, it doesn't matter - enjoy everything you do. You will see that every single moment lived in the present can be nothing short of a miracle.
Once you get started, practice this little method day after day. You can set little triggers that will remind you of getting back to the present in case you mind wanders off. The trigger can be your kid's voice, the traffic noise, your co-worker's appearance.
One additional fantastic way of being in the present is meditation. In meditation, as a rule, you close your eyes and thus you remove the complexity of the world around you. That allows you to be aware of your mind only and that way you can be aware of and live in the present moment more easily.
Therefore, practice awareness every day and in whatever task you have to do. Value each moment of your life and you will find and keep the indescribable calm and peace of your inner being even in the middle of the harshest traffic of your life.
l.m. is a member of the sunnyray editorial staff.
Thanks for this nice introduction into how to live in the moment. What I find very important, and you also point out this, is not to try to quiet your mind. If you try to do that, which we all have a tendency of doing at least at the beginning, you will create friction, and disturb your mind even more. Instead it is better to be a witness, a neutral observer. If you do not judge your thoughts, they will eventually become less dominant, and you will be able to live in the moment more easily.
I was looking for a guide how to live in the present. This is the best guide I have found so far. I can't thank you enough. God bless you all! vasa
Glad you like this post, vasa. Thanks for the nice words. God bless you too.