Most people live in one of two places:
The past (dwelling on past achievements, or brooding over old regrets, hurts, and resentments).
The future (what will happen if I lose my job, what if interest rates rise again and we can’t pay the mortgage, what is the world coming to).
Not many have mastered the art of being fully in the present.
I know I haven’t.
The recommended way to practise presence is through breathwork or breathing exercises.
- Close your eyes.
- Breathe deeply and slowly.
- Notice your breath, and pay attention to it.
- Counting helps.
- As other distractions and thoughts come to mind, notice them without judgment, then turn your attention gently back to your breath.
- Keep going.
The shortest meditation I have done was 10 minutes.
The longest – four hours. (Part of the homework assigned by my mentor in a transformational coaching course I did.)
Using guided meditations helps if you prefer to hear a human voice talking you through the process with the aid of affirmations and mantras.
I like the ones by Louise Hay, Dr Joe Dispenza and Bruce Lipton.
In slowing down our breathing and tuning out our chaotic and random thoughts, we begin to reconnect with our deeper selves.
It is hard work, and the temptation to go back to our devices or YouTube or the latest C-drama is always there.
But if we keep practising and paying attention to our breath, we will gradually get better at being in the present – fully present, not with half our mind thinking of what to have for dinner, disrupted every now and then by unwanted, uncontrollable interruptions.
Just pure being-ness.
Being connected to this place, this moment, this body.
Being alive to all that my five senses and my sixth sense are keenly receiving.
Allowing a clear space to form in and around me, where I can see and hear and feel clearly and deeply, where my divine intelligence and creativity can flow, without my own filters, biases, thoughts, and beliefs getting in the way.
It’s a practice worth cultivating.
And like all good things, it takes time and persistence.