29 December 2014
“…..it was a changing period of time that took everything away, turned it around and returned growing like a glorious garden full of color light and magical energy and most importantly possibilities…”
Life as I knew it was over. I looked around and realized this is not what I thought I though I would be doing. This realization was eye-opening. It was the confirmation of my control issues. If I could judge the situation as not what I anticipated, this lead me to believe I was certainly lost in the past (ruminating) and investing in over planning the future (fearful). What does this mean? Simply put not spending enough of time of my time being present. Funny, not haha, but ironically the present is where I want to dwell. I want to be in the moment. I want to enjoy what is happening when it is happening. The benefit to bringing yourself to the present is pleasure. Worrying about the past and anticipation of the future is a waste. Time just passes and it belongs to none of us. It is precious, it marches in, with or without you. Consider this when you are not operating in the present moment. You miss what is happening in real-time, wasting time thinking about what is now the past or anticipating what hasn’t yet occurred, the future. All we have is the present moment. The past, yes it is the past, it does not belong to us. We only have the promise of a future, there is no guarantee. We all have things to look at in hind-site, enabling us to move forward and be more productive and thrive. That is fine. You are in the moment reviewing your take away from a learning moment. That is prudent and useful. Obsessing about what has happened is unhealthy and dangerous. You can easily get stuck in the past. This is regret and it will prevent you from growing. What good comes of that? It will hold you back and likely depress you. Obsessing about what may happen is just as destructive to your well-being. The bottom line, the past and the future will rip you off. They both can suck the life out of you. People close to you will tire of your obsession with the past or the future, as it will overtake you, unhealthy and unattractive. It is so sad to be wasting time. Remember the truth, time is precious. You can not buy it you can’t recoup it, it is fleeting. Be mindful and make a commitment to being present. It is like any habit, good habit, it takes time to establish it. You will quickly discover how often you are not present. I think it may surprise you. The practice coming to the present moment is very similar to taking a breath and coming to center, a calming moment. You can work toward being present more of the time employing the same methods. Pay attention, take the breath and bring yourself to the present moment. We can all benefit from this work. Modern life can be very distracting. You can decide to set aside these distractions, just decide. I find I am becoming more present the more time I dedicate to my meditation practice. It calms me down and clears my head. Meditation creates space. Makes room and helps me use my precious time in ways that benefits my well-being.
Think of someone you know or someone you met who seemed very attractive. I am not talking about physically beautiful or handsome. I am talking about their essence. It is something you can’t put your finger on. It is a combination of elements. It is their personality, sense of humor, intellect, body language, tone, engagement, and the stories they tell. Any attractive quality adds to the overall feeling you get from someone. When you experience this feeling from someone your takeaway is positive. You would love to get this person better. You would love to know their secret. The next time you come across one of these individuals, evaluate your experience. What is there to learn? Well they don’t have a secret, they are simply present. Being present fosters their ability to employ powerful tools that opens them up to every possibility. They have the skills to meet and greet people, they open themselves to you, this is an attractive quality. They are engaging, they look you in the eye, they “see” you, their body is supple, their body language says I am open, they may rest their hand on your arm while making a point, they are genuinely interested and they are very good listeners.
The practice of becoming more mindful is just that, the more you think about it the more you will do it. You will become more and more present. Everything worth having is worth working on. Practice, practice, and practice. The present is an amazing place to be. You will feel energized. The way people respond to you will be all the evidence you need, you will find it refreshing.
I recall my experiences when I began my focus on being present. It was during the same period of time where I had begun a meditation practice. The method was mentioned by a yoga teacher after a class. When you encounter anyone, your best friend, the gentleman who holds the door open for you at the post office, or the clerk at the market, make a connection. Here is what I would like you to try. You encounter someone, take a breath, look them in the eye, and quietly say to yourself, Namaste (that is my choice, you may use your own centering word). This may seem awkward at first, but as you practice it you we see that it takes mere seconds and no one even realizes you are doing it. This simple act will delight you. You will feel people’s energy change as they open up to the possibilities of your time together. It feels genuine, authentic and real, we all crave it. I believe this practice has helped me be more present and has enriched my experiences with others tremendously. I do this every day. I am not too busy or in too much of a hurry to do this. Try it, you may find it as addictive as I did when I began. You will feel awkward at first, keep trying, you will develop your own style and you will love the results. They are evident. People’s body language changes, they sense a warm engaging feeling, and they open up. What transpires is fantastic, you will see and feel it, it is palatable. It becomes an exchange of energy, with possibilities that would not have existed had you not engaged on this level. Imagine enjoying your connections with other much more. This practice can be the beginning of a collaboration, cooperation, a new friendship, even a romance. Trust me you will love it, please give it a try. This practice always brings me to center, and into the present moment. Get out of your own way, stay in the present moment and enjoy the experience.
Talk about “you never know”. I have discovered incredible things about people through this level of engagement. It is a game changer. You will be astounded by what is revealed, what comes to light and the energy that is created with this connection. You will be most delighted by what you learn about yourself. Yes, open up, connect while being present and feel yourself grow, fantastic!
“tragedy stays alive by feeling what’s been done to us, while peace comes by living the result” Mark Nepo