Yesterday, Today and Tomorrow
Where do you spend most of your thinking time? Are you the type of person that focuses on memories of the past, and cannot get past those memories such as sadness, shame, guilt, anger or loss? Or are you like many individuals who are constantly worrying about the future and how this or that will happen, always living in a state of fear, dread, or wishful thinking? I’m sure you’ve heard the expression that the past is gone, the future not here yet, and that you only have now. But, like so many people, you cannot enjoy the now moment because you are either still focused in the past or worrying about the future.
Yesterday is gone; it is only a memory. Yet many memories linger of your experiences from the past. That’s fine, as long as the emotional drag has been released. If you wish you could undo certain actions or words, or if you feel anger, guilt or shame about those behaviors, the only way you can move into your present life with joy and harmony is if you erase those negative feelings and replace them with new positive thoughts. The past negative emotional attachments are most often what weighs you down in your present life.
Others worry continuously about the future – perhaps about finances, their health, finding their soulmate, getting older, happiness of their children, their career, or simply what’s next? However, since the future isn’t here yet, why do so many people spend so much time trying their best to live there, or believing that’s where they’ll find happiness?
We only have this very moment. In fact, the moment in which you are reading this is already gone and the next moment has begun. But were you so busy thinking about what was coming next that you didn’t grasp what you were reading completely? This happens so often as we listen to someone talking to us. Rather than truly hearing what they are saying with rapt attention, we are thinking about how we want to reply. Same thing happens when we eat our food. How often do you actually think about the food you are eating: it’s texture, taste, colors, nutritional value, etc? I doubt you are there in the moment with your food since many people are busy talking to others, watching TV, or some type of multitasking as they eat.
I remember, as a mother of five, being very busy most of the time, yet I seemed to thrive on doing many tasks. I also remember hearing many people compliment me for being such a good multitasker or a supermom. I allowed that feeling to soak in and fluff up my ego many times, but what I didn’t know was that all that multitasking was wearing down my adrenals and creating havoc with my nervous system and health. Very seldom did I quietly notice the moment I was living in for I was always stepping into the next thing, planning something new, or doing my best to get everything done in a timely manner. I remember evenings were so hectic with helping kids with homework, baths, stories or talking and bedtime prayers. In hindsight it would have been better to relax afterwards and take some me time, but instead I would prepare things for the next day or do some sewing or another creative venue – resulting in burned out adrenals years later.
Our lives are meant to be lived in every now moment of the day, taking time to actually enjoy that moment. That is called mindfulness. You see, we cannot change the past – we can only release the negative memories and treasure the positive ones, but living there serves no purpose in our present life. And as far as the future goes, well, it isn’t here yet. The only thing we get to do for the future is decide on what we’d like to experience and then place our intention for those dreams to manifest. But worrying about it and excessively fretting over things not seen yet, only creates stress in our life that again, serves no worthwhile purpose in our present life.
What is mindfulness then? Mindfulness is simply awareness, an intention to be present in whatever you are doing or experiencing. It is paying attention to life and all that it consists of. Whether you are vacuuming, doing the dishes, taking a walk, playing with your kids or grandkids, cleaning the garage, washing the car or just talking with a friend or neighbor, be present in that moment and be aware of the interaction. The multitasker might be cooking something, cleaning the kitchen while talking on the phone, and that is not mindfulness!
At times we need to be totally quiet, for in the silence we hear divine guidance for our lives. Mindfulness in the silence opens the doorway for meditation and attunement with the realm of spirit. This requires that TV’s are off, iPods and cell phones on airplane mode temporarily, and anything distracting to our quietness be closed off from our location. Then, to acquire that state of mindfulness, simply be. Sit, stand or lie down and just
breathe…in and out…and allow your mind to slowly get quiet. Focus on anything you want, and if thoughts travel through you mind, let them, then allow your breathing to get your attention once again. An interesting thought for you – the words listen and silent contain the same letters. Isn’t it interesting how perfectly they fit together?
Focus your thoughts on how quiet it is, or how your breath travels in through your nose and down into your lungs as your belly protrudes with all the air you are placing there, then feel your breath slowly go out through your mouth as your body relaxes. Think about how good oxygen is filling your body and traveling to your brain and anywhere else it is needed, then as you exhale you feel all the toxins leaving your body along with your worries and fears. This process of mindfulness in the silence should be easy and effortless – no rules – just simple and quiet.
As you do this a few minutes per day, you will find yourself feeling more relaxed and more in tune with your life and what is going on in it. Your awareness will grow and you can actually remember to smell the roses! I remember in my busy life years ago, driving back and forth in my driveway taking kids here and there continuously, but one day as I drove back into the driveway, I noticed my roses all in bloom right beside my driveway. I walked over to them and smelled a few, realizing I had been missing their beauty for weeks when I drove right past them but never saw them, and I had a whole bed of roses! It hit me then that I had been missing them completely because I wasn’t focused on the moment I was living in, but rather was focused on schedules and what to do next.
So now that I’ve reminded you of mindfulness and being present in your life, I suggest you make a conscious effort to become mindful and aware of each moment of your day. It will slow you down just a bit, hopefully enough that you actually begin to enjoy your life, even in a busy life.
Remember these facts – Your past is behind you and looking back serves no good purpose. And don’t drag the past with you or try to relive it. Simply let it all go and begin enjoying today. Additionally, you cannot live in the future because it hasn’t arrived yet, and in trying to live there you miss all the precious moments of now. Worrying about things that may happen but probably won’t happen only causes stress and misery, and worry has never solved any problem – a known fact! Therefore, it too serves no good
purpose in your life. So we’re back to living in the now moment, the only place in which life is real and can be enjoyed.
Take time right now to pull yourself into this moment and relish in it. You are alive and have power over this moment. And remember, this very moment in which you are present is creating your next moment and the one after that, so think positive thoughts so you create the future moment that you truly want to experience as you reach that now moment!
Here’s a quote that pretty much sums up this article.
“Forget yesterday…it has already left you.
Don ‘t sweat tomorrow…you haven’t met yet.
Instead, open your eyes and your heart to a truly precious gift – TODAY!”
- No Comments
Leave a Response