Live in the Moment.
It’s a fast paced life, no time for anything. Everyone seems to be zooming past, quickly, very quickly to next destination, towards the next activity or whatever it is they have to do next. There is nothing wrong in a fast paced life, but it almost feels that everyone is in so much in a hurry and rushed that they don’t have time for anyone else.
When travelling by public transport there was a time when people interacted with each other, they chatted, fought, gave free advice. But today we live in a different world, commuters seem so unsocial, they don’t seem welcoming, they are disinterested in what’s happening around them. It almost seems that everyone is robotic in their approach.
There is no point running from one pillar to another post and not enjoying the journey. This life is a journey and we are meant to enjoy every moment. But where is the moment??? we are so engrossed in social media that we have forgotten the age old skills of socializing. I believe that sometime in the future we will need a curriculum on social skills and etiquettes in school as this will be a trait long forgotten in the future.
Travelling in a public transport everyone appears to be wired in to the mobile or some kind of electronic gadgets, watching movies, listening to music, gaming and what not.. When was the last time you noticed the changing color of the leaves, the bird chirping away gaily, the rustling of wind, the bright sunshine, or even the bright moonlight?
We are so busy running thinking, distracted of the next tasks that we don’t even concentrate on the task at hand, while having a bath you are already thinking of what’s for breakfast, what points need to be presented in the meeting.
Since we don’t live in the moment, this leads to a feeling of being anxious, a feeling that the time is not enough, a feeling that you are not in control of what’s happening with you and around you, a feeling that you wish you could do more in the time that you have. To avoid such a situation, you need to slow down things: no that does not mean you need to miss your timelines, it just means that you need to prioritize and tell yourself that there is only so much you can do in a day. What tasks would you do first if you were told that you have only 1 day to live. Prioritize and plan your day, but live in the moment.
- Live in the Moment – Very often we don’t live in the moment, our minds are wandering aimlessly, at times we are anxious of unforeseen things, so many of which may never even happen.
- Be present both physically and mentally.
- For eg, if you are in a meeting and already dreading the next meeting. You don’t justify the time spent in the first meeting as you are already thinking about the second meeting.
- Also think about this that all the time that you spend thinking about the next meeting you have lost track of what is happening in the current meeting, so you may end up asking questions or may lead to rework as you didn’t get all the points during the meeting.
- If you feel that your presence doesn’t matter in the meeting, then question yourself as to why you are attending the meeting. Are you a decision maker, will you be providing an input to the meeting, can you take notes from others, what’s your role in the meeting
- Ask for an Agenda for the meeting, it’s possible the topics are not pertaining to you at all so you can then direct the person to someone who can be of more help for those topics. You can decide based on the agenda whether you should attend or not.
- Slow down – Breathe slowly, do you realize that this is the single most important thing that you do in life. If you stop breathing there is no life. Focus on the air going in and out of your body.
- Enjoy everything around you, we have become so robotic and have a time table that just about everything is a reflex action. Take time to notice things around you. What leg sock do you wear first, what side of the cup are you drinking your tea.
- Look around, at times following a routine, makes life monotonous and mechanic, can you do things differently so you begin to enjoy the moment, take another route going home instead of the regular route. Yes there is lots of traffic, but if you can plan and leave on time or early, suddenly you will notice the new building coming up, or a new shop or some eateries that have mushroomed around your area.
- Listen to the stories: This has been my favorite way of connecting with strangers. While at a traffic signal, do you notice how the vendor is trying to sell his wares, or do you see the beggar children, are they enjoying themselves by the road or are they up to some tricks with the motorists. Or do you see other motorists; you will find something different about most people, if you observe you will see someone playing and nodding their head to music, others on a conference call while driving to work, others on the way to airport, how do I know, well with all the luggage that’s tied up on the car with the tags hanging out that’s how you know that they going to the airport, or look at the number plate, how many outstation cars do you see on the road.
- Listen to untold stories, while out shopping, have you noticed the sales girl / boys what are their stories, see the faces of people in the park, of those passing by. Do you see the small kids running in the park in their imaginary world? Kids are most active and have a wonderful way of connecting and being in the moment.
- Pause – Unplug – We should abstain from all forms of electronics, especially the media including social media. In today’s world we are more connected virtually instead of in the physical realm. We have imaginary fan following on social media and false bravado and our desperation need to be validated and keep a tab on who is doing what. Unplug, switch off your phone, TV, or any form of virtual connectedness. Connect with those around you, your family, pets, neighbors, or even strangers who are passing you. I have found myself smiling at small things and able to exchange that smile with a stranger because we both happened to be in the moment and know exactly what happened, and that moment is magical because without saying a word you were able to exchange a beautiful connectedness and you are able to create a smile, which hopefully will ignite another smile.
- Solitude: This is possibly the most difficult of all, the need of being wanted, to be surrounded by other social beings is an age old need. However even then you need to spend time with yourself. This is only possible if you delink yourself from everyone including those close to you, for some this may be a few minutes for others they may need longer time to be away by themselves. This is the time when you can focus on self, introspect reenergize, and be at peace with yourself. If you can achieve all other aspects become easier as you become more aware of what’s important to you and you are able to spend time where it’s required.
- If something untoward happens look at what’s in your control, can you do something about it? If yes do it if not then go through it, not all situations are pleasant, but possibly this moment is building you up for something bigger and stronger, it is only when you live in the moment is when you learn and you are able to use this learnings in the future.
So the next time you seem hassled, you are juggling too many things, just take a walk, breathe listen to your breath going in and out and then refocus. Concentrate on what needs to be done now and live in the moment. There is no point on crying about the past its already gone, no point worrying about the future it is yet to arrive, however what you can control is the present, that is why it is called a present (gift) use your time wisely by living in the moment. Be happy in the moment don’t ruin it by thinking about what’s past because that will not come again.