I never gave much importance to living in the moment.
My life has been much more about time travel. My comfort zone is the future.
The planning and anticipating of future events have been my go-to place. There everything is perfect. Or sometimes not, if I am catastrophizing about some future event that may or may not happen.
Even worrying about the future was a more enjoyable and safer place than the present moment.
Living in the moment can be scary. It is real and that means to do it you must be open to whatever the feelings are that the moment generates in you. Even the thought of that in the past was enough to send me tearing off into the future.
Yet, for two days, I spent a lot of time in the present moment.
It was an incredible experience. It wasn’t even terrifying. Now part of my success was that I pre-qualified my emotions and had a plan for the weekend. I would write early in the day before the family got up. Then I would focus my attention on them and making the most of their visit. And it worked.
Even the visit to the dump was a success.
We got the trash emptied at the landfill, recycled our cardboard, and got to see the vultures up close and personal. Vultures are almost always hanging around the dump, looking for an easy meal. My dog loves to check them out and watch their antics.
Then there was time for an outdoor fire down by the lake.
We used long sticks to cook our hot dogs and smores. We sat in camp chairs long after the sun went down, enjoying the fall evening. We talked about all kinds of things and I was engaged and participated.
Sunday there were 14 family members around the dinner table.
We enjoyed each other’s company and celebrated birthdays that had occurred since the last time we were all together. Then there was time to break up into small groups, some talking on the porch, some playing board games on the dining room table, some watching the games, while others chatted here and there. Going back to work Monday, I was still full of positive energy from the weekend.
I could do this “living in the present” thing again.
In the past, my focus would have been on the structure, the mechanics, the facilitating of the different parts of the days. My energy would have gone into the what and how not into the who. This would keep me on the edges of the activity, without having to commit to anything, to share anything, or be an active part of the activity.
Jumping in feet first and being in the moment made me feel wonderful, happy, and energized.
I would highly recommend the present over the past or the future.
Where do you spend most of your time?