One of the most important practices for living a life of peace that I have learned is how to fully be in the present moment. I have written about this in the past, and I know deep down in my core the true value of what it means to be present. I get it all, and yet lately, I’ve been finding myself in a tricky position when it comes to where my presence lies.
What happens when you get so wrapped up in healing your past that you start living there too much? What about when you become so consumed with manifesting your best life that your mind is always in the future? How often do you recognize that you rarely are fully present to the here and now?
This has been my state lately. Can any of you relate?
I think sometimes we get so wrapped up in our practices, tools, and work that we can get a little distracted from the moments that present themselves right now. What I’ve noticed when I get stuck in this cycle is that I am way less productive (meaning I’m not actively creating the things that I desire). I’m also not as happy, and time feels like it’s going by at warp speed.
So this week I have a take on living present in each moment, and I’m incorporating a new practice into my life to keep me in the time that I know that matters most: the present.
Here are my five tips for living present:
1. The first step in being present is to recognize when you are not being present. This was huge for me. I have always considered myself a very present person (I write about it all the time). It wasn’t until this was framed for me in a different way that I was able to see that I really wasn’t. I was tricking myself with my spiritual work and really out of touch with reality. I have to say, the awareness piece is an instant relief. Once you know, you can shift!
2. Start to take an inventory of your thoughts and really get to know your mind. Now that you are aware, what is your mind really thinking 24/7? What are the common themes of your thoughts? What events, places, desires, dreams, etc. are occupying your mind and taking you out of the now? Think of this as collecting clues for your new strategy to living present.
3. Gently bring your mind back to the situation at hand when you notice it wandering elsewhere. Your mind will wander. It’s a muscle, and it’s been at play for a while! This is your training to get it back on track. You can do it!
4. Dedicate specific time for reflection and manifestation. I do believe that healing your past and visualizing your future is incredibly important work, when it’s practiced in a structured fashion. If you have some lessons you are working on, or if you are focused on creating something for your life, put it in your calendar to give it the time it deserves. Don’t let your wandering mind decide when it’s time. I think you’ll find that with this practice you will sort out more and faster by doing it this way. Give it a try!
5. Cultivate excitement for life as it is right now. Sometimes I get so wrapped up in what my life will be, I don’t really give credit for the life I have now. How sad is that? Whatever stage you are at in your life, what is happening right now for you is serving a purpose. Honor it by living fully in it. You will know when it’s time to make changes or create something new. By living with gratitude for what is, you are creating the space for all that you desire. Have thanks!
I hope this reframe of living present in each moment serves you. It’s truly been eye opening for me to live this way.
Let me know your thoughts in the comments below!
Michelle is Peaceful Mind Peaceful Life's Creative Director and resident writer. She has a degree in Journalism from Indiana University and is also a certified holistic health coach through the Institute for Integrative Nutrition and registered yoga teacher with trainings with Anuttara Yoga Shala and Strala Yoga. Michelle has a deep desire to help people find happiness in all areas of their lives, and truly believes the Peaceful Mind Peaceful Life movement will bring lasting change to the world. Michelle splits her time between Florida and New York City and loves connecting with people from all over the world. If you'd like to contact her, she can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org