Blinking Pink Hello Kitty

Be Here Now

I stumbled across a quote the other day which read “Wherever you are, be all there” and it really got me thinking. I spend quite a bit of time away from the present – not fully living because I am too enveloped in my own mind. When I am at work, when I’m hanging out with friends, or when I’m on the phone with a family member, I often daydream about situations that either have or haven’t happened. I relive moments that happened last week, reeling in past happiness or overanalyzing a previous event. I exercise my wishful thinking and imagine things that have never, nor probably will ever, happen. I daze off into dreamland, completely absentminded and not at all present, and think about other places I’d rather be or things I’d rather be doing.

How many moments do we miss out on because we are distracted by things that are not in front of us? Don’t we owe it to who or whatever we are in the presence of to be fully attentive, because wouldn’t we want the same if tables were turned?

Can we change what has happened in the past? No, it is done. Can we predict what is going to happen in the future: tomorrow, next week, or next year? No, it is unwritten and unpredictable. Can we take charge of the very moment we are in now, embracing it to the fullest? Yes. That is the ONLY thing that we as humans are capable of doing.

To be present and “all there” in a moment means many things. When you listen, really listen. Don’t passively nod your head giving another person the impression that you are paying attention, when in reality you are thinking about the cute person that waved to you this morning. When you hear a joke, fully absorb it. Laugh and let it be real. When you are passing people and buildings on the street, don’t be oblivious to everything happening around you. Observe! Take in your surroundings! There are so many beautiful or important scenes we miss out on.

I challenged myself for one week to truly live in the present. It is difficult to even put into words how much I have been missing. How many smiles went unseen, words unheard, moments unnoticed. To be honest, at the end of the first few days I was exhausted, but my brain has never felt so stimulated and my heart so liberated.

Leave the past behind you and the future ahead of you, because you are not there - in either place. Enjoy where you are at this very second. It is all that you truly have. It is all that truly belongs to you.

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