In defense of the present moment
Updated: Nov 1
A few years ago I tried reading The Power of NOW, the groundbreaking book by Eckhart Tolle which basically tells us we are slaves to our minds, constantly living in the past or the future (neither of which are, incidentally, even real) instead of embracing the present moment.
Now, it's not easy to wrap my head around these concepts of ego enslavement and Being and the illusory nature of the past and future. I suppose my ego-mind has thrived unchallenged for so long that I'm not even sure how to stop remembering the past or dreaming of the future and just live in the present. Sometimes it feels like all rat race all the time, both in my head and in the world. Do you have the same problem? Is it even a problem, or just normal thinking?
As a business owner who literally has to think ahead all the time, planning and making decisions while trying to avoid past mistakes, it can seem literally impossible to empty the mind and focus on the NOW...until I am making soap, that is, or wrapping a beautiful gift basket, or cooking a holiday meal with my kids, and am so caught up in it that there isn't room for any kind of thought. I am completely immersed in, and in love with, what I am doing in the present moment. That's being in the flow.
Since we can't make soap or do whatever else it is we love every minute of every day, I have included a list of simple hacks to help you stay present and riding the wave of the now instead of resisting it, obscuring it or bombarding it with unhelpful, pain-causing memories, resentments, fantasies, and other types of obsessive thoughts.
The present moment is all we have so...you better read this!
10 Mindfulness Exercises To Keep You In The Here And Now
I could have written from experience here but sometimes, other people just do it better so...I am happy to share a blog post with you from the MindValley blog, on how to stay in the present moment and be here now. These are super simple ways to bust out of your mind-numbing, doing-stuff-but-not-really-here routine, and stop the mental chatter that could be doing nothing but blocking you from feeling the peace and clarity you deserve. If you want to feel like this chick without actually having to get way up on a mountain in the middle of nowhere, read on.
Here's their excellent article on 10 simple ways to stay present.
In my humble opinion, they only thing they missed was a long hot aromatherapy bath with essential oils for focus :-) That always seems to get me present; yes, my mind definitely drifts in the tub, but in a good way, focused on enjoying the hot water, the natural bath products, the feel of soap on my skin.
P.S. What would YOU add to this list? How do YOU stay present? Please share with us!