Are you living in the moment or are you unaware of the moment because you are so focused on tomorrow, next week, next month or next year? It is easy to coast along on autopilot, lost in our thoughts or worrying about things that are yet to happen. Nevertheless, truly living and enjoying our lives happens when we focus on the “now.” Take a moment to look around and enjoy where you are in this moment. What do you see, hear, smell, feel? Who are you with? What is happening? Just enjoying the experience of the present can set the stage for a good day and a good mood.
Often when we get caught up in the future, we lose sight of the joy that is contained in just being thankful for the simple things in life. There is nothing wrong with planning, but don’t let that become your life. Your happiness depends on you living those plans and being mindful of them while they are coming to fruition. If your mind is racing and you are having difficulty slowing it down, try this mindfulness exercise:
Sit comfortably with your eyes closed and think of the following:
Imagine yourself in your favorite location: a place where you feel safe, comfortable and content. What do you see there? What do you feel. Think of the sounds and smells that accompany that space. Breathe that space in, and breathe it out. Feel the warmth that envelops you. Spend some time just breathing in and out and focusing on the safety and warmth of that location. Once you have spent some time relaxing and decompressing, slowly open your eyes and be present to your “now”.
From time to time when life becomes too overwhelming, ask yourself if you are too scattered, too overwhelmed or too focused on things that have yet to come. Taking some simple steps toward a more mindful approach can change your mood, your perspective and often the quality of your day. Enjoy the now.
Tamra Hughes, MA, LPC http://www.thcounseling.com
- 7 Easy Ways to be Mindful Every Day (psychcentral.com)