Mindfulness and living in the now are hot topics right now. So what do these terms really mean?
They mean having your feelings rather than avoiding them. They mean concentrating fully on whatever it is you are doing in each moment. They mean paying attention to the moment you are in rather than focusing on the past or future.
So how exactly can you work on being more present in the moment? Here are some ideas to get you started.
Pick a moment in your day and focus on what you are doing. Your thoughts may wander but just keep bringing them back to whatever it is you are doing.
Take a moment to really notice something, the sun, the leaves, or the car in front of you. As you are in the moment, let yourself feel grateful for the moment and what you are experiencing.
Don’t just notice in your head, notice in your body. Many people are disconnected from their body sensations. Take the time to notice how different feelings manifest in your body.
Focus on your breathe. If you are present in your body you are more present in the moment.
Notice when you have feelings and allow them to come. Move towards your pain rather than away from it. That may sound ridiculous to you. Why would anyone want to move towards pain rather than away from it? What does that even mean? It means that rather than avoiding what is difficult you find acceptance. The more you struggle to avoid feelings the more you will find yourself struggling with feelings of anxiety or depression. Just allowing yourself to feel sad or anger when those feelings arise can protect you from anxiety and depression later.
Living in the now in today’s chaotic world can be a challenge. But like anything if you take small steps and practice them you can work towards a living a life in the present.
“The secret of health for both mind and body is not to mourn for the past, worry about the future, or anticipate troubles, but to live in the present moment wisely and earnestly.” – Buddha