Being present is something the ancients knew about. They understood the importance and value of enjoying the present moment for what it was worth and trying not to consider the problems of tomorrow.
Unfortunately, in our time-obsessed modern world, hardly anyone lives in this state of consciousness. Instead, our society actively programs us against it. We’re supposed to think about the future. After all, our lives depend on it!
The problem with this approach is that it’s leading to all sorts of psychological issues and dysfunction. People are having a hard time getting through life because they are constantly worrying about hypothetical problems in their minds. They ask questions like “What if I lose my job?” or “How will I pay the bills because of the rising cost of living?”
The trick here is to recognize that the present moment is the only thing that really matters. Being present is the ultimate driver of human happiness, and by focusing on the here and now, you can experience more joy, peace, and fulfillment than you ever imagined.
The Benefits Of Being Present
Being present just means being fully aware of what is happening in the present moment without judging it or wishing it to be different. It sounds incredibly simple, but it’s actually surprisingly hard to achieve in practice.
It doesn’t mean blocking out or suppressing your thoughts. Instead, it’s about being open to whatever arises in our experience, without clinging to it or resisting it.
Say, for instance, you’re meditating. This practice lets any thoughts come into your mind. The technique is to simply concentrate on them as they happen and let them pass by, like ships in the night.
Being present can also mean being in touch with your senses, thoughts, and emotions. You want to observe them, rather than be consumed by them.
Being present has numerous benefits including:
- Reducing stress and anxiety and not worrying about the future or regretting the past
- Increasing day-to-day happiness by making it more likely you will appreciate what you have
- Increasing joy by appreciating the beauty and richness of life that is unfolding in front of you
- Not comparing yourself to others or chasing after things you think will make you happy but ultimately won’t
How To Be More Present
The advantages of being present are spectacular. However, achieving genuine presence is not without challenges. Most people find it hard to do because of their busy and hectic lifestyles.
Fortunately, there are several things you can do. First, you can meditate by focusing on a chosen object or just observing thoughts as they enter and exit your mind. Ungloo recommends carrying meditation-related equipment with you wherever you go to make this process easier.
You can also try conscious breathing. This technique can regulate your emotions and calm your nervous system. It also makes it easier to get out of fight-or-flight mode, which is the enemy of being present.
Lastly, you might want to try taking a different philosophical perspective on life. You don’t need to view it as being so important or serious. It’s not.