Usually we focus our mind on the past or the future. We rethink over and over again our past mistakes or successes. We daydream about a better future where we will be healthy rich and successful.
Someday I will be happy when I’ll have… when I finish school… when I’ll get married when the children will grow up…
All these sentences are putting us on hold. We are in a waiting zone. When we focus on the future, we can’t listen to our surroundings, we can’t be attentive to our family, friends and most important, we are not attentive to ourselves. Our attention is always somewhere else. When we are at work we think of our children, when we are with our children we think about work. Some women will admit that while being intimate with their partner their mind is focused on the dishes in the sink.
The only way to leave full, satisfying life is to move our focus to the present. We live here and now.
In order to receive the data are five senses sending us, we must free our mind from thought about the past and the future. We must devote our mind for the current moment; devote our minds to the current experience.
Focus on the present is something we are born with. An infant always focuses on the present and on his present needs. When he is hungry, he wants to eat when he is thirsty, he wants to drink. Somehow we lose this ability when we grow up. We stop listening to our bodies. Suddenly we are eating when the clock says we should and go to sleep when the “right” time comes.
We are always “doing” and are never “being”.
The good news is that the ability to be attentive to the present and to ourselves is something we can relearn. All we have to do is take the time and make the effort to learn it back.
The next two exercises will help you practice “being” instead of “doing”:
- Turn off your phones for a predefined time when you are with your spouse, children or with yourself. At this time you are not allowed to communicate with anybody besides the one you dedicated the time to.
- Once a day, stop and give yourself fully for a sensual experience. Eat while you taste every single bite. Smell the person you are hugging. Go barefoot on the soil. Stop all activity and listen to a song you like.
If you can’t focus on the present you are going to lose the future.
Good luck and tell me how it went…
have you read my article “Minding the gap between our desires and our reality“?