How to be in the present
Yes, I finally did it. I walked the stage and graduated from high school as an honors’ student. Up until that final moment, nervousness tingled down my spine. I didn’t know what to anticipate moving forward. More importantly, I didn’t know how I felt about elevating to the next level. It wasn’t until that moment I realized that I was just as nervous as I was excited. Of course, I am proud of my hard work and accomplishments. But, I guess the moral of the story is embracing the moment as it is. Nothing more, nothing less. So, the question remains: how to be in the present?
In my mind, I augured that walking that stage would feel more like lightening or thunder; I foresaw a big, extravagant, overwhelmingly frenetic bang. Despite this, in reality, warm and comfort wrapped me around in a blanket. It was as though I was in the gap in meditation, or the space between stimuli and response. Provided that I didn’t know what to make of that experience, I decided that it was simply nothing. I don’t need to judge the process of walking across the stage. Instead, it is imperative to accept the moment and embrace what emotions surge to the surface.
Also, I am glad that I am learning the importance of letting go. It is the only way to move forward and this progress upon your journey. As a result, no matter the phase or experience, nothing lasts forever. Accordingly, this article will dissect how to be in the present:
- Let Go of the Past
- Live like Today is your Last
- Optimism and Resilience
- Put your Best Foot Forward
- Have Fun for its Own Sake
- Embrace Social, Lively Interaction
- Appreciate the Simplest Pleasures
Let Go of the Past and be Present
At the end of the day, you cannot change what has already happened. You have to embrace and learn from it accordingly. Only self-sabotage manipulates you into thinking that beating yourself up is in your best interest. The time is always now to love yourself unconditionally. Without a doubt, the past is not always the most auspicious chapter in our lives. But, then again, by the same token, it is what motivates us to become better people. After all, who would you be today if not for all the yesterdays prior? So, it is okay if you do feel regret, shame, or disappointment. Nonetheless, try to celebrate the past in its continuity and then let it go. Watch it like flying lanterns. Then, you can embrace the moment of release.
Live like Today (Present) is your Last
You know what they say: tomorrow is not promised to no (wo)man. Because of this, living for a future that might never come is not living in any capacity. That is why living every day like it is your last is real living. It is arguably one of the best ways on how to be in the present and thus enjoy the ride. I’d even argue that this approach could make you live longer. But, happiness isn’t measured in time. It is measured in the quality of experience. And believe it or not, today is a timeless, immersive joy. So, why not be the life of your own party? Why not enjoy the fun and celebration while it is here? Most importantly, why not go all out and listen to the music beating in your brave heart?
Optimism & Resilience is a Present
Again, optimism and resilience not only enhances the quality of your life but also helps you to live a longer, more sustainable life. Why? Because it pays your mind and body well to meditate on the positive and thus conquer the odds. Also, life never happens to you, even if it feels like it. Life always happens for you. There is always a silver lining, an invaluable magic in the experience. And, as with any journey, relatively speaking, the right mindset makes the difference between a good life and a bad one. Furthermore, remember that you hold all the power. You are the infinite co-creator of your reality. Thus, it is time to start acting like it. Yet, even better, it is time to start being the power of optimism and resilience.
Put your Best Foot Forward
What more can you do? If you feel pressure to be your best, you are better than you were expecting. More often than not, we feel pressure to be perfect. This is because we measure ourselves up to other people’s standards. As a result, we internalize the negative inner critic and thus berate ourselves for not living up to these self-imposed standards. So, do yourself a big favor: reverse the narrative. You are perfectly imperfect. You are special, invaluable, unique, divine, and powerful. Can’t nobody do it better than you. Can’t nobody do it like you. That said, you’ll be happy to know, I suppose, that once the pressure is off, you can do the fancy foot work like a pro!!! In other words, with weightless shoulders, the world is your oyster.
Have Fun for its Own Sake
Since when do we need permission to have fun? Well, most would obviously point the finger at COVID, right? But what if we didn’t blame this on the COVID, the sunshine, or the moonlight but rather the boogie? That’s right!! In more ways than one, if you want to know how to be in the present, boogie. Whether you are meditating or quite simply getting lost in thrilling highs of the moment
, you are meditating. If there is anything that COVID taught me, it is having unconditional fun. Essentially, this means having fun without letting life circumstances dictate the present. So, take off the leash so to speak and allow fun to run a country mile. After all, there is no harm in enjoying the helpings of fun life brings as it goes and comes.
Embrace Social, Lively Interaction
Did you know that meditating is just about engagement as it is observation. And while this might seem counterintuitive, what else does it mean to find the gap between stimuli (observation) and response (engagement). Interestingly enough, one could argue that observing stimuli is engagement. So, what does all this mean? Turn up!
Is it really that simple? Yes, well, that depends on the individual. As such, life is whatever we make it. In my experience, I have learned that people treat you how you treat them. If you act standoffish, they will be standoffish. If you are present, they will present a nicer, more fun and engaged side. Therefore, try not to be a wallflower. You don’t have to be the life of the party to give life to the party. And, quite frankly, if you are a party pooper within yourself, you will unfortunately give this energy off to everyone else. This does not mention how you put yourself in a more optimal state of mind when you let go and embrace what the present offers. Thus, the next time you are around friends, acquaintances, or total strangers, be mindful that you get out of it what you put into it. Just be yourself, connect with life, be what makes you feel the happiest more often, may the gap ever be in your favor
Appreciate the Simplest Pleasures and be Present
Last but not least, you must appreciate the simplest pleasures. As a species, we have a tendency to underestimate the still power of the most calm, tranquil, and pure moments.
Water. Food. Music. Light. Sex. Intimacy. Friendship. Air. Life. Imagine how much more of this and then some we would have if we expressed gratitude. After all, the gratitude is the root to all abundance
. Anyways, provided that being present can be extremely hard to do, it is essential to not always want to be grandiose. Sometimes you have to start small before you can go big. Admittedly, there are other times in which vice versa is equally relevant. Nonetheless, appreciating the simplest pleasures is the key to attracting the greatest joys and wonders thereof
. For example, I had such an excellent time at PROM and MAVBASH (senior post-grad party). This was because I not only implemented the meditation strategies above but also because I decided to express gratitude for what I missed in quarantine. Never have I valued human life, connection, and touch SO much — I plan to get vaccinated!! There are certainly perks to having something abundantly when it was few and far between. But, the irony is that music is in the heart
. Whether we are all together or virtually present, we are one. We are all interconnected. As such, we must appreciate one another while we are here. Within and around the simplest pleasures will abound.
P.S. I hope this article answered your question: how to be in the present? Meanwhile, encourage yourself and everyone else to join the email list to stay tuned for more great, relevant meditation information.
Why not elevate in every attribute of your being and enjoy the immersive, sensational, beautiful scene? Aren’t you a present?