NOW, is Where Your True Power Lies
Have you ever considered your past is no longer a real moment in time that you can influence or change? The past only holds memories of your life as it was. Returning to fond memories brings you great joy, but the past officially ended the instant you stepped from the then into now.
You and I cannot go back in time to change the choices we made. Reflecting on the past and our previous choices is the way we learn. But, allowing our mind to dwell on what we think should have, would have, or could have been in the past takes our attention away from the present. However, only in the present is it possible to apply what we learned from the past and create a better outcome for the moment that is now.
The same is true of the future. Regardless of how badly we may want the future to come, we cannot rush ahead and live in a time that does not yet exist. The future is not real; it is only the next moment’s present, over and over, infinitely.
Permitting our mind to race ahead and attach itself to worries of what may happen disconnects us from the present, the only time possible to purposefully get ready for a future event. So, one key to living a fulfilled life is to patiently surrender to the truth: Life is only real now.
You and I have a conscious choice to make. We can live disconnected from the present while convincing ourselves we are actually plugged in, or we can slow down, remain patient, and focus our attention on immersing ourselves in the moment at hand.
One truth is that there is something wonderful hidden in every moment of life. Another is that our contentment comes from slowing down to find it by mastering our attention to stay right here, right now.
Each moment your mind is flooded with thought. You are constantly processing information. You are not without power over your mind and the thoughts it creates. You are not your thoughts. You are the conscious, present heart-self that is responsible for remaining aware of what you think so you stay present in the moment.
For example, whether you’re indoors or outdoors, take a moment to look around. Notice the items that surround you. Let’s say you’re in your living room, and you notice a throw pillow is out of place. You think to yourself, That pillow should be over here. How did it get there? I did not move it. Who moved the pillow?
Your mind’s tendency is to attach itself to the pillow or other objects around you. In an instant, you are taken away from looking around to having your mind grab control of your focus. The mind naturally wants to evaluate the pillow, judge its improper placement, and possibly notice a stain on it. This is the mind’s constant chatter.
When this happens, you are no longer in charge of what you think about. Your mind has wandered, evaluated, judged, and kept you from viewing the pillow for what it is—just a pillow. The mind does this automatically until you become aware of it. When you notice your mind starting to shift your attention from seeing something as simple as the pillow out of place, reel it back.
Imagine a rod and reel symbolizing awareness over your attention. Become an expert mind-angler. Each time you notice your mind wandering from what you want or need to focus on, hook your attention and reel your mind back.
You are the only one who realizes the thoughts you make up. That means you are capable of stopping your mind from wandering from what you want or need to focus on. You have power to return your thoughts from the past or future to the present. You have control to stop the negative and unproductive conversations of your runaway mind. You have the ability to quiet your mind to keep yourself present in the NOW.
Life is now, this moment. I cannot tell you how much life has improved just by keeping myself preset in the now. Work on keeping your mind focused on what is happening in the now moment. Begin with the conversations you have. As you speak, hear your words in your head and in your heart. When listening to others, hear their words in your head and in your heart. Allow someone to finish speaking before you jump in so you do not interrupt them or make them feel crowded or cut off. Listen to others with a quiet mind, without thinking about a response. Your relationships will immediately improve when you stay emotionally present in the now.