When was the last time you felt joy—real, deep, exalting joy?
You know, the kind that bubbles up inside you and elevates everything around you. Maybe there was laughter, or maybe there was just a golden silence. Either way, you were fully present in that moment, weren’t you? The pain of the past and the anxiety of the future was far from your mind.
Peace, joy—and likewise, God—can only be found in the present moment, which is why mastering the art of being present isn’t just a tip to become better conversationalist (although it’s that, too). Being present is how you find peace and joy in your one and only precious life. It’s where the richness lives.
The good news is we can reach out and touch it right here, right now!
As children, this was easy. But as adults, we’re always processing, caught up in managing and controlling all the world around us. The ability to analyze what just happened, and what might happen next is what has helped us stay alive as a species. But today, many of us struggle with a constant sense of anxiety about the future and the past, even though no danger is really present.
Life in the modern world is a far stranger beast than the woolly mammoth. So, initially, trying to be fully present can feel a little reckless. We are so used to control that it’s hard to let go, and trust that it’s really is going to be okay, afterall. Engaging with what’s right in front of us, which means giving ourselves fully to the present moment, requires vulnerability—which can be terrifying.
But in order to feel real peace with ourselves, we have no other home except the present. We can start with little habits that slowly strengthen our resolve to make peace through awareness the norm—giving us real freedom to experience a deep and lasting joy in the everyday.
WAYS TO INCORPORATE THIS PRACTICE
Be Here • Awareness • Wonder
Take a moment every time you get up or sit down to bring yourself back to the present moment. Alternatively, set a timer on your phone to go off every hour as a reminder to return back to reality as it is right in front of you.
Take a ten minute walk once a day, preferably at the same time each day. As you walk around in quiet, notice how you feel physically, emotionally and spiritually.
Everyday find a common object and look at it from different perspectives. Think about what it’s made of, how it came to be, who created it and what its purpose is. This will spark your innate curiosity and wonder.
“In order to feel real peace with ourselves, we have no other home except the present.”
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