There is a lot of talk and encouragement these days about being “Present in the Moment”. Basically, we humans spend a whole lot of time either thinking about the past (through both fond memories and regrets) or projecting our thoughts into the future (through dreams, ambitions, worries and fears). Now, I don’t want to put a whole lot of rules and confusion to this already hard to accomplish state of mind of being present, but I did want to point out a few things I have come to understand.
Being fully here right now in this exact moment without distractions from your mind is actually an amazing feat. In my opinion, it takes time and dedication to obtain this state of mind and unless we are clear on what it means, it often brings confusion and frustration. Even though every single life experience is lived within the present moment, very little of our mind’s full capacity is actually present and accounted for in the now. Like for example as I wrote not even one full paragraph my mind drifted to a conversation I had this morning (which reminded me of a topic I need to include in my book); I thought about what I still needed to get finished today (which also reminded me of what could definitely wait until tomorrow); I wondered if the wind would die down tonight (which reminded me that if I was truly living and present in the moment I would go enjoy the weather outside instead of writing); and finally I pondered if perhaps I needed to change topics because I could not even keep the focus long enough to write an article about focusing and being present in the moment. Yikes.
This is when I truly became engaged and started to think about what it meant to me to be present in the moment. How do we learn to allow the void in our mind to just stay present and open instead of being filled with everything else? For me it takes a lot of conscious effort (damn, there I go again…off into another world within my mind). Truly being at my full attention to participate in, engage with and observe everything as it happens in real time without deviating to another flow of energy takes considerable effort. However, this effort is worth it in many ways. First, it keeps things simple. Secondly, staying present helps us become better listeners.
There is clarity to the term “being present in the moment” that I wish to point out so we can truly enjoy the many benefits held within this state of mind. My mind follows energy – always. If I were in school I would have long ago been diagnosed with ADHD because of how often my mind switches between topics and focus points. I work with countless parents on helping them to understand their children who have been diagnosed with similar mental agility and flexibility. Thing is, I don’t want them to change their children at all and I actually try to encourage them to follow the flow of their attention. Making us focus on one thing when our mind and body craves to be somewhere else is denying the true passions of our soul. And technically, is it not this exact passion of our soul’s desires that we as adults are trying to learn to follow again?
To me, being present is being present with the flow and direction of our own spirit. I move through life with the flow of my thoughts, not trying to keep my mind engaged on any one topic at any one time. This is how I communicate so well with the spirit world, simply because when they want to get my attention, they get it (which by the way, they often do by showing similarities from past experiences as well as likely outcomes in the future). Going with the flow of the energy within my mind is how I am able to direct my thoughts and intentions into making positive changes in this world, simply because when I hear my spirit being called to help send healing energy, I can and do respond regardless of where I am or who I am talking to. And finally, this is how more often than not, I make the majority of my life’s decisions, simply by watching where my mind wonders and what captures the attention of my spirit.
So, when we talk about being present in the moment, we have to get clear on what that means. When our mind naturally meanders onto something else, including another thought, another task or another adventure, then technically – allowing ourselves to flow with that change is more “in the moment” and in alignment with our thoughts then trying to keep ourselves directed and focused on the original topic (which technically is now a thing of the past). Inner peace comes by enjoying the flow of the moment, and that involves allowing yourself to notice and follow the flow of your thoughts. If I am trying so hard to direct my focus to one thing in this moment because I think I should be able to keep my mind from wondering, then technically I am being present with my logical mind instead of my soul. Ooh that got my attention, I have to say that again. When we talk about being present in the moment, we have to get clear on what that means. If I am trying so hard to direct my focus to one thing in this moment because I think I should be able to keep my mind from wondering, then technically I am being present with my logical mind from the past instead of my soul within the present.
Go forth and embrace your life, being present in every moment and fully attuned to the adventures of your soul.