5 Easy Ways to Stay Present
When you are here and now, sitting totally, not jumping ahead, the miracle has happened. To be in the present moment is the miracle” -Osho
Living in future unknowns and past regrets are costing us all the present moment. There isn’t anything we can do to change the past and no matter how much we plan there’s no real way of truly knowing the outcome of the future; that is why the present moment is so precious. It’s natural to have thoughts of your past especially for survival, a red eye on the stove means hot, an unknown dog running towards you mean run and its healthy to have goals and aspirations for your future; however when those thoughts and everything that comes with them starts to dictate your life in the present is how we get lost in the sauce. What we do in the present moment is the only thing we have control over. That’s why when people ask me when the right time is to start a yoga practice I always say NOW in the present moment!
What does it mean to stay in the present moment?
Being present in the moment is another way to say “pay attention” or “being mindful” of every activity you are currently doing with intention. Imagine making a cup of tea and really being conscious of the entire process of creating this tea making experience, your energy, thoughts, feelings, and sensations, that is how you can be fully present in that moment. Not going over what you have on the to-do list for later, who didn’t like your new Instagram post, or why your child refuses to hang her coat up in the coat closet no matter how many times you remind her! The same can go for walking, dancing, reading, or sitting in silence, once you set the intention to be present! When you are operating mindfully in the present moment, you are truly operating at optimum levels. You are more observant, seeing things, people and situations for what they truly are.
Why is being present in the moment beneficial?
Amongst becoming more observant being present in the moment is proven to increase mental, physical, and emotional wellbeing. Living in the present moment can increase your focus and concentration, reduce stress, boost your immune system and create inner awareness. Elyssa Barbash said it best “depression lives in the past and anxiety lives in the future. Alternately, calmness and peace of mind live in the present.” So take a few deep breaths in and lets get into 5 easy ways you can be present right now!
5 Easy Ways to Stay Present
The act of putting your feelings and thoughts into written words. Journaling for some can be therapeutic. It is way for you to release trapped energy of things left unsaid, a safe space for thing best left unsaid, and a great source to look back on while you are doing the work. You can free write, which is exactly what it sounds like putting pen to paper and really letting your mind run free there no specific topic, there's no prompts just you and your thoughts. There is prompt writing where you have or create a specific topic or prompt that resonates with you in the present moment and see where that takes you, this is great when you have lots of uncomfortable or confusing emotions coming up. Then there is script writing where you can write about any scenario as if it is already happening whether it has or not, awesome manifesting tool! For example you have a test, instead of journaling about the anxieties of the test, or the fact that you’ve failed the test three time already focus on how it would feel once you pass the test, and write about that! Living in the present moment gives you the choice of what and who you want to give your attention and energy to.
How can something so normal as breathing help you stay present? Because your breath is always with you. Your breath is your anchor, it is your life force, without it you’re just a body. You can use your breath to help with focus and concentration which makes breath control essential to being present in the moment. If you can find your breath you can find the present moment. Imagine yelling and cursing someone out, you’re not focused on anything other than getting your point across so much that you don’t even realize the other person has now tuned you out. Gain control of your breath and gain control of the present moment. If you had taken 10 seconds to breathe in deep and exhale slowly you probably could’ve seen how much the situation didn’t have to cost, you your peace. Once you learn how to tap into your breath by being present in the moment you control your mind, body, and peace!
Affirmations are phrases that you can repeat to combat negative self-talk, uplift yourself mentally and emotionally, and stay present. When working with affirmations it is important that you use present tense language such as “I am” I have” “I speak”, because the subconscious mind doesn’t know the difference between past and future it just knows what is here in the now. If you want to be calm, affirm in the present that you are calm. Repetition is for the subconscious mind, so when you do become tense, you will automatically start to repeat your affirmation “I am calm”, which will bring your mind and body into alignment with what your are affirming. That’s how you become unfuckwithable, when you’re affirm in who you are and how you show up in this world, it will become extremely hard for others to move your spirit.
Meditating can be guided or unguided, and you can focus on anything, on gratitude, releasing of tension, the body, lights I mean anything. When meditating to stay in the present moment you can close your eyes and turn your attention to what is happening at that present moment, the sounds you hear, your thoughts, a or the sensations of your body. Present moment meditations can be performed anytime of the day and any place. One of my favorite present moment meditations is the “body scan” throughout my day I will close my eyes and start to mentally scan my entire body starting at the head and progressively ending at my feet. I will envision the body part that I want to bring relaxation to and breath into it, feeling it relaxed as I move to the next body part.
Mocha Yoga (MY) Check-ins - We’ve all heard the saying “check in on your strong friend”, well no matter what you think, you are your strong friend. No one looks out for you, more than you do, you feed yourself, you clean for yourself, you even buy yourself all the things you want whether it’s in the budget or not. MY check-ins are how you can tune in to how you’re feeling in the present moment. No matter where you are, you can always ask yourself “how do I feel right now”, and with that innerstanding you can make the best choices for Self at that moment!
These 5 easy ways to stay present can be used independently or all together for a total mindful practice. Stay educated, empowered and elevated!