Each week, or at the very least, occasionally, you choose to join me for my WAKEUP Calls on Facebook live or to read my blog here at The WAKEUP Company website.
That’s not something I take for granted. The fact that you’ve chosen to spend a few precious moments with me is truly a gift, because time, in itself, is a gift.
And that’s kind of what I want to talk to you about today – Appreciating moments and then leaving them in the past so that you can be present in the next moment.
We all share each other’s moments these days by plastering them all over the internet, but despite social media, we all know that life isn’t always pretty and sunny and fun.
I use social media as a personal log of moments I find remarkable and that I don’t want to forget because life is a series of moments…that’s all it is. The past doesn’t really exist other than what you remember of it. The memories you hold, the experiences you had. The times when you didn’t feel like being present, but you knew deep down that your intention needed to be set right here, right now, and not on that stack of bills over there, or that floundering ad campaign, or that overdue social media post, or the clock ticking away.
I’ve had many struggles over my lifetime but being present is one of my biggest challenges in life to overcome. There is almost nothing more difficult, and I mean nothing than being consistently present and mindful. I’ve had to create triggers for myself to remind me to be present and mindful and it’s taught me to reprogram my thinking.
British philosopher, Alan Watts used to talk a lot about being present. He loved life. He loved wine. He loved a good cigar. He loved the finer things in life and made no qualms about it. He talks about being present in terms of enjoying the small moments. His thinking was that if you’re going to drink that wine, you might as well enjoy it like it’s the last sip you’ll ever take because all you have is right here and right now.
So in following this thinking, I have a reminder set on my phone to go off twice a day that says, “Take 5 minutes to be mindful.” Through this, I’ve learned how amazingly adaptable our minds and bodies are, and it’s just a simple example of the tools we have at our disposal to be mindful.
We, humans, are very intelligent creatures (despite what you may see in the news) and that’s the other edge of the sword – our Achilles heel, if you will. We’re so intelligent and so perceptive that we foresee things to happen in the future that may never happen, and simultaneously worry about the things that happened in our past. We live in this dichotomy of “future meets past” in which there is zero space to live in the moment, to feel true happiness or true inner peace, and to truly appreciate the small but remarkable moments.
So that’s my WAKEUP call to you today – right now is all we have and right now is all there is – as cheesy as that may sound – it’s a fact.
Developing mental toughness and the ability to reel yourself in when you’re letting your moments get the best of you can only serve you in learning to remain present.
Like my mom used to say…
“You can’t prevent a bird from shitting on your head, but you can prevent it from building a nest there.”
That’s all staying present is.
We can’t control the random worries or fleeting thoughts, nor should we try to. But by being observant of these thoughts, doubts, worries, emotions, we allow ourselves to admit that we’re feeling pissed, or scared, or anxious, or sad.
The moment you acknowledge those feelings and accept them for what they are is the moment you can put them in the past and move on to the next moment.
And you deserve that. You deserve to leave the past in the past and to live in the moment because time is the most precious commodity we have and to waste it would be a giant slap in the face to this valuable gift you were given.