It’s human nature that we usually catch ourselves thinking of the future, worrying about what’s going to happen. Or it could be that we’re thinking of the past, rehashing all those bad memories. It’s taxing and somewhat debilitating. It robs you of the present. Worse, it makes you feel bad about yourself.
Being in the present is crucial as this helps you relish your life more. It’s about focusing on the tasks at hand without getting distracted by the noise around you or unnecessary thoughts in your head.
To be more present in your daily life, here are ways for you to practice and incorporate into your routine.
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1. Practice mindfulness meditation
Mindfulness meditation is a mental exercise that helps you ease your mind and slow down your train of thought. This can be done in any activity you do on a daily basis.
If you’re washing the laundry, try to get a feel of the clothes’ fabric. Take time to smell its scent. It’s the same when you are driving. Focus on the steering wheel. Focus on what it feels like around your fingers.
Just like any other hobby, mindfulness meditation takes time to get used to. But this doesn’t matter much as long as you do this every day. Spare yourself 5 to 10 minutes to practice mindfulness meditation.
2. Have a grateful heart
Gratitude is highly associated with happiness and its capacity to uplift your spirit. It helps you experience much more positive feelings. But it does not only end that way.
When you appreciate the moment that you have right now, it helps you become more aware of what’s happening around you. It helps you put yourself back into the present time.
Thus, when you wake up the following day and regardless of how you feel, don’t forget to express your appreciation. To live for another day is a blessing. Not everybody can experience that. So, consider yourself fortunate.
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3. Accept what is
There are things in life that are beyond our control. The future is one obvious example. Nothing is certain and that might make you feel more anxious. This happens to all of us at some point.
What we can only do is to re-focus; to re-direct our attention to the current time. Our present life is something we can control and act upon. Instead of investing our energy in something that has already happened or will probably happen, let’s concentrate on the present.
We cannot change reality. But we can change how we perceive and react to it.
4. Bury the past
You might find yourself still tied to your past. You cannot let go of the hurt, embarrassment, mistakes, or things you could have done if you’d tried. It’s tough to let those go or to forget that you even experienced them.
But you can learn to bury the past by picking up the lessons that could change the course of your present life. You don’t need to forget about everything that has happened. Yet you can learn to let them go by applying what you have learned from them.
We often do not realize how the past affects bodily functions. Thus, you may want to try neurofeedback therapy to learn how to control the physiological processes that are triggered due to certain situations. It is an excellent way to learn to let go of things you cannot control.
Your past has gone. This is now.
5. Refrain from multi-tasking
Due to the amount of work you encounter on a daily basis, you cannot help yourself but multi-task. Perhaps, you believe that the more tasks you’ll do at the same time, the faster you’ll finish. Obviously, this has some truth in it.
However, your brain can only process so much. That is why you could experience an information overload that may make you feel demotivated or overwhelmed.
To be more present in your daily life, try doing one task at a time. Do it with intense focus. You can time yourself so you won’t be tempted to do the non-essentials.
6. Have daily goals
Goals help you stay on track. They help you concentrate your attention on the present; on working on them. So if you must, have daily goals.
They don’t need to be grand. Starting with reading a chapter of a book or going for a 10-minute walk with your favorite person would be enough.
If you have a clear destination, you won’t get lost on your way. You are aware of where you’re going and what you will do. Goals do that to you. It helps you to be more present in your daily life while making you make the most of your time.
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7. Take some time off
Due to the overwhelming surrounding we have, we get distracted or stressed out. That could be a factor that holds you back from being more present in your life. It is frustrating.
If you come across this situation, treat yourself to a vacation. Perhaps, you have unused vacation leaves that you can peruse. You don’t need to go to faraway places to relax.
By allowing yourself to lounge at a cafe and enjoy a refreshing drink, you’ll be able to re-charge. Try switching off your phone and enjoy.
8. Journal your thoughts
Writing is a therapeutic form of art. It helps you become more honest with your feelings without needing to worry about other people’s feedback.
If something is bugging you, write it down. Allow yourself to pour out your soul on a page of a notebook. This could be a tad intimidating but it’s a practical way of battling anxiety.
Expressing yourself through writing helps in being more present in your daily life as you’re able to get rid of what’s worrying you. Thus, I highly recommend that you do this regularly and you will eventually see a positive result.
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Ready to be more present in your daily life?
To become present in your life is one thing and to be more present thereof is another. It is a constant ordeal and a mission. It indeed requires deliberate and consistent effort on your part.
You will be tested every day and you might find yourself on the verge of giving up. Know then that you’re not alone. We’re all humans and so, we experience the same thing at some point in our life.
We get distracted, frustrated, and defeated. But to keep going despite everything is a show of courage. If others can become more present in their daily life, so can you. Learn from your past and apply those lessons to make the most of your present.