Are You Living in the Now?
We are happy to welcome Stacey as our Guest Author today! If you’ve spent any time here at Life,forinstance, you’ve already been in conversation with StaceyMJHughes. She is an active and thoughtful contributor to the conversation. Today she challenges us with the question; are you living in the now?
Do you find yourself thinking about what you did last week, or last year…and concentrating on how you can prevent the same thing from happening, or even worse, not knowing what did happen? Let alone how to change it?
Do you worry about what is going to happen tomorrow, next week or next year?
In his book The Presence Process, Michael Brown says “Most of us spend our waking hours either thinking about circumstances of the past or events yet to occur. Unconsciously, our mind is almost exclusively engaged in this activity.” I have a hard time to just sit back and enjoy the ride; to sit back and just enjoy what is… today …the now of my life!
Can you just sit back, enjoy and live today – now? How do you do it?
I think this is a struggle a lot of us have – whether it’s from the rat race of our busy lives, the way our society is always ready to ‘get up and go already!’, not being able to be really happy…. whatever the cause – I truly believe that the majority of people in our society are not truly enjoying their own personal now.
Brown says “The past holds regrets and the future holds the promise of improvement… We therefore spend all of our moments reflecting on what did not work for us in the past and mentally planning the adjustments …to attain the state of peace and fulfillment we seek”.
This spoke profoundly to me – it told me that I needed to stop worrying about the past, it was over…done…could not be changed…and to start living today.
This doesn’t mean that we can’t or shouldn’t think at all about tomorrow or next week. We live in a society where we need to make plans for meals, events, etc. However we should not be consumed with what has happened or what will happen.
The following is what made it all come crashing together, like an earthquake in my head:
Greg and I had been together for a few years, rough patches, but truly soul mates. The sanctity of marriage was very important to me, as a role model to the children, and because my faith. Our marriage was something I had wanted for a long time. It was something that was a focus for me…and it happened… it actually and truly happened (and was an incredibly amazing day).
Then, on the honeymoon, my thoughts started moving towards the future; us moving to live in the country. It was incredible, how quickly my brain had switched gears. It was like my mind had a “Life To Do” list and now that the wedding was checked off, it was time to move down the list.
But wait – I just wanted to enjoy being married, not to immediately start into discussions on where to build our new off-the-grid home, what type of energy to use, or what type of building design, etc.
This was when I started really delving into Michael Brown’s book, because I wanted to learn how I could live now!
Do you live in the now? Are you able to simply enjoy what is happening around you?
photo credit: Teo Romera