The mind is a powerful tool, but without good training, our thoughts and feelings can sabotage our goals and cause anxiety and depression. Learning to “Be Present” is a great way of staying mentally fit so that you can enjoy your life to the fullest.
What does “Being Present” mean?
Being Present means fully enjoying and participating in the moment that you are in. It is the moment that you are calm and you know exactly what you want. You are focused on what you are doing without thinking about anything else. That is when life is more real
Being Present is an act of allowing ourselves to come out of the mind chatter that we spend most of our lives engaged with.
Being Present means letting go of our attachment to the past and to the future.
Being Present means recognising ourselves as the observers of our thoughts and being able to redirect our wayward thoughts into a more positive and constructive direction
In his book, The Power Of Now, Eckhart Tolle teaches us that every minute we spend worrying about the future or regretting the past is a minute lost, because really all we have, to live in, is the present aka “The NOW”.
The 3 main lessons from, The Power Of Now, are that
- Life is just a series of NOW moments.
- All pain is as a result of resistance to the things you cannot change.
- You can free yourself from pain by constantly observing your mind and not judging your thoughts.
The most important time of our life is the one that we think of the least: The present moment!
The reason that only the present matters is that everything happens here and we should, therefore, do our very best to ensure that our “NOW” moments are positive and harmonious.
It is important to always be fully conscious in each “NOW” moment because “NOW” is where the magic happens and each “NOW” moment governs a future “NOW” experience.
This may be difficult to comprehend and grasp when you first hear it but the more you consciously put it into practice, the more you will see results and the easier it becomes.
There is never a time when it won’t be your “NOW” moment – the trick is to take ownership of your thoughts and feelings in every “NOW” moment and align them with positive energy.
The trick is in learning – really learning and understanding that each “NOW” moment will govern how you experience life in future “NOW” moments. I cannot stress this enough.
Everything you feel and sense takes place in the present.
When you think about it, the past is nothing more than all the present moments that have gone by and the future is just a collection of present moments waiting to arrive, the content of which are largely dependent upon how consciously and positive you are focused in your “NOW” moments.
Dwelling anywhere other than the present is futile.
Take full and conscious ownership of your “NOW” moment with as much positivity /proactivity as possible.
Honouring our thoughts and feelings
The fact that we may sometimes be distracted by our thoughts and feelings does not mean that thinking is unproductive. There are times when we do need to properly think through certain issues in our lives. Such thinking, when done consciously and intentionally, can also be part of “Being Present”
It is ok to be angry, sad and upset in the present moment if you are fully conscious and can take temporary ownership of those emotions.
It is perfectly ok to say to yourself “ I am feeling really angry or sad right now but I honour and take ownership of this feeling and I allow myself to be angry or sad in this NOW moment”
Part of the philosophy of stoicism is the idea that the only pain you really suffer is the one you create yourself. Eckhart Tolle, in his book, The Power Of Now may well have been alluding to this philosophy when he suggests that any pain you feel results from resisting the things you cannot change. We spend a lot of time thinking about the past and the future but we can only actually live in the present.
When we start to resist what has happened in the past or is anticipated in the future we experience pain (physically and or psychologically).
In order to get rid of this pain, Tolle recommends 2 things:
- Constantly ask yourself “what will my next thought be?”
- Stop Judging your thoughts and urges! – ( Just observe them for what they are, i.e. “thoughts” and “urges”)
The first method is designed to delay your actual next thought so that you have enough time to realize just how frequently you are in autopilot mode. This will then enable you to start interrupting your mind and thus separating from it.
Personally I have also found it easier to interrupt my mind with the repetition of positive affirmations.
The second method simply encourages you to observe but not engage with the mind chatter.
“Realize deeply that the present moment is all you have. Make the NOW the primary focus of your life” – Eckhart Tolle
Do not allow yourself to be distracted by what does not affect your personal world. Far too often we allow too many people and situations which are beyond our control to lower our inner feeling and vibration. This in turn impacts upon how we perceive and experience our outer reality.
It is not selfish to guard your inner world – IT IS VITAL! Protect and beautify your inner world with love and sincerity using frequent inner reflection. If you are aware of the way you feel, and you consistently reach for thoughts that produce an improved emotion, in time any intense negative emotions will subside.
Never be misled by the distractions and noise of your outer world.
Your …Every “NOW” moment is where your true power lies.
All “NOW” moments govern what you will see and experience in future “NOW” moments!
Whenever you cannot control what’s happening in your “NOW” moment … You can at least challenge yourself to control the way in which you respond to it.
Whatever is happening. Remember your true power always lies in how you are responding and dealing with EVERY “NOW” MOMENT.
Your power is in NOW!
Watch and observe yourself and others and how you all handle “NOW” moments!
The empowered ones are those who handle their “NOW” moments positively and consciously and do not lose themselves!
Always strive to protect how you are feeling internally. Your thoughts and feelings should largely be positive.
“Change your thoughts and you change your world.” – Norman Vincent Peale
Thoughts are things. They are powerful and pre-emptive, The very thoughts running through your mind can help to manifest the life of your dreams or draw you closer to your greatest fears. Most people do not realise the inherent power of our thoughts and go about life steeped in one mindset or another. They do not realise that whatever we think about or focus on consistently is what we will move towards. We are the product of our thoughts.
It is therefore important to ALWAYS focus and think about only what you want to see in your reality – Never get caught up in things that you do not wish to see in your experience.
Focus only on what you want!
Mind your own business!
When you are positively minding your own business you are focusing and thinking positively only about what YOU want to see in YOUR world.
Only ever think positively … if you are doing this for at least 60% of the time then your life of course will be mainly positive.
Always focus on your own “NOW” moment with positivity, thinking positive and uplifting thoughts.
As far as the past is concerned “be thankful” for the role it has played in bringing you to this “NOW” moment. As far as the future is concerned think about it “optimistically”
Try to have many “NOW” moments where you understand the importance of being fully present and taking ownership of what you are creating by thinking positively.
Movement will help you to get into your “NOW” and to be fully present
Movement might be yoga, dance, walking in nature, running, cycling, swimming etc.
Others ways to BE PRESENT might include:
- Ask Yourself “What Really Matters Now?” –
- Doing one thing at a time and not multitasking. Concentrate on the task at hand.
- Drinking water and mentally observe the water as it travels through your body.
- Breathing Deeply – close your eyes and breathe in while counting to 7, hold your breath while counting to 7, and breathe out for 7 counts – Repeat 3 – 5 times. This can be done at any time of the day and in between important tasks.
- Stretching – simple stretching or yoga postures help us to be present in the same way that smiling helps us to be happy.
- Meditation – Find a technique that suits you.
- Repetition of positive affirmations.
Living in the present will allow you to build a whole world that will become your legacy. The present moment is the only time that we can live our lives consciously, aware that each moment we breathe is a gift.
“Yesterday is history, Tomorrow is a mystery, Today is a gift, that’s why it’s called THE PRESENT”
“Yesterday Is Relative, Tomorrow Is Speculative, But Today is Electric. That’s Why It’s Called Current”