Encouraging Word of the Day
Present-1.(of a person) in a particular place. 2. existing or occurring now.
As we move through our days, there seem to be three states of thought, those that are in the past, those that are in the future and those that are in the present. To be in the past or future takes you away from the present into a fantasy land of existence. The present moment is all that we really are guaranteed to have. Being present for life allows you to make choices which really honor you, improve your life and the lives of those you interact with.
Don’t Get Lost in the Past
It is so easy to slip into the thoughts of the past. We all have a past that seems to work to dominate our mind. Regret comes to you when you remember the past and the things you did or did not do. Memories are addictive and delicious. They entice you with times of happiness and nostalgia but provide equal torment over mistakes and poor choices made. The time we spend in thoughts of the past is valuable only in what you can learn from them. Other than that, leave the past in the past.
Experience is the only value that the past provides. Learn from it. The good times may have been good, but allowing your mind to be there will cause you to miss out on good things available to you right now. Painful moments are just as fantastical. The things that happened are done, gone and buried. Regret for the past will rob you of joy that exists today. Be present.
The Anxiety of the Future
It is hard not to spend time thinking about the future. Of course, you must plan for what is to come, to do anything else is irresponsible. But the problems come when you allow your mind to build up complex scenarios about things that might happen if this happens. Or if that happens. This speculation builds up wild scenarios of fantasy of things that most likely never will happen. The thoughts wasted on these things create anxiety and rob you of the peace, joy, and enjoyment of the present moment you can have.
The future will come and it will bring good things with it for you to enjoy and it will also bring challenges that you will have to overcome. But to worry about it excessively is a great recipe for anxiety, fear, and unhappiness. Be present.
Achievement in the Present
Being present doesn’t mean that you don’t have goals for the future or dreams that you want to achieve. In any great accomplishments, there are going to be thousands of little steps on the way. Being present means that you experience the joy in each of those steps along the way because you have to take them. I think the metaphor of climbing a mountain explains this. You could take a helicopter to the top, be deposited there see the view and then be flown back to the bottom. But the experience lacks the value of climbing the mountain and reaching the top. There is a joy in each stage that a shortcut won’t provide. You can use the experience of this climb on your next climb.
Be present in the daily accomplishments on the way to your goals and dreams and you will not only achieve but experience joy on each step along the way. The journey is often providing more value than the destination. Be present in this moment and see what joy it contains. Be careful not to miss the great opportunities for experience that you are given every day in each moment. Be present in thought, words, and actions.
“The next message you need is always right where you are.” ~ Ram Dass