“The lesson of being present.” I can honestly say this is one of the biggest, most powerful, life transforming lessons I’ve ever learned. As we move through life in the Western World our mindset is typically goal oriented… gotta complete this, gotta be here, gotta beat them, etc. Its competition driven and instills not only the urge to advance but the urge to just be somewhere other than where we are at right now.
While goals are healthy, they provide direction and I definitely recommend everyone have some goals, they more often than not take us out of the present moment and place us in position of “wanting to be somewhere else.” This is a major problem, because once you get to the place you want to be you are stuck with the same mindset, “there is some other place thats better.” This constant craving takes us away from the enjoyment of the current moment and we spend our lives as slaves to the past and future.
How Do You Know You Aren’t Present?
Here is the question that Ekart Tolle puts to his readers to define whether or not they are “being present.”
Is the current moment an obstacle, an enemy or just a means to an end? If you stop and pause to answer this question whenever you feel frustrated or angry or stressed or unhappy you will find that sure enough you are focused on the past or the future and are not living fully in the present.
So How do We Live In the Present Moment?
The first step is always “awareness.” If you start feeling stress of any kind, stop for a second and check in through:
- A quick deep breath through the nose… “Ujjayi is a diaphragmatic breath, which first fills the lower belly (activating the first and second chakras), rises to the lower rib cage (the third and fourth chakras), and finally moves into the upper chest and throat. The technique is very similar to the three-part Tu-Na breathing found in Taoist Qigong practice. Inhalation and exhalation are both done through the nose. The “ocean sound” is created by moving the glottis as air passes in and out. As the throat passage is narrowed so, too, is the airway, the passage of air through which creates a “rushing” sound. The length and speed of the breath is controlled by the diaphragm, the strengthening of which is, in part, the purpose of ujjayi. The inhalations and exhalations are equal in duration, and are controlled in a manner that causes no distress to the practitioner.” excerpt taken from wikipedia
- A look out the window to see the trees and wildlife (who are totally present)
- Or some other type of re-focus like asking yourself: Where am I and what time is it… As prophetically depicted in “The Peaceful Warrior” you are “Here” and the time is “Now.
If we can re-focus through we are instantly able to adjust and let go of the past and future. This is when you start to feel really freaking good and not just once in a while, but a majority of the time. That’s what I call a happy life.
Feel Free to comment below on methods you use to be present
Lots of love, Chad