"Learn from the past, set vivid, detailed goals for the future, and live in the only moment of time over which you have any control: now." - Denis Waitley
In our culture today when we desire change, we often want it NOW and then become frustrated when it doesn't happen on our perceived time schedule. All we can see is what we don't have yet. Sometimes that causes us to give up. We feel like we've failed.
But as we've been talking about making changes by building habits, believing in your ability to change, starting small, and realizing that real change takes time, I hope that you are coming away with the notion that fast doesn't always equal success. Just because our goals aren't reached for days, weeks or even months, doesn't mean we've failed - it simply means we are working on it. Working towards the future we see.
But here's another key component of the process of change - yes we are working towards our goals for the future, but RIGHT NOW is exactly where we are supposed to be at this moment. And learning to live in the now and appreciate all we have TODAY will actually help us enjoy the process of change.
Becoming mindful and appreciative of our daily lives, much like I wrote about the holidays last December, will help us achieve our goals and enjoy life more. Being mindful - focusing on our daily lives and all we DO have - actually makes us more productive.
Here are a few ways you can practice mindfulness and “live in the now:”
Keep a gratitude journal. Use it to record the things you're thankful for every day, no matter how small. It only needs to be a sentence or even a few words, but added up over time, you will be able to look back at all you have.
Make focusing on being present a habit. No matter the task, concentrate on being aware of all you're doing.
Do only one thing at a time. Multi-tasking is often the enemy to living mindfully - thinking about too many things at once causes us to dwell on none of them.
Build 'cushion time' into your schedule - leave room between tasks and activities so you aren't rushed.
What are some ways you like to practice mindfulness?
"Do not spoil what you have by desiring what you have not; remember that what you now have was once among the things you only hoped for." - Epicurus