Monday, February 8, 2010

Stay in the Moment

WHAT is this life if, full of care,
We have no time to stand and stare.
W.H. Davies

Life is one big process of waiting for something to happen. During the week we are waiting for the weekend to come, once the weekend is here – we are waiting to go back to work (not necessarily looking forward, but still getting ready one way or another). We are waiting for our well-deserved vacation to get a break from life. We are waiting for the love of our life, but often once we are in a relationship, we are waiting for it to be over, and something better to start. We are waiting to have children, but when we have them, we are waiting for them to grow up, so that we can regain our freedom. Our children become adults and leave the nest, then we are anxiously waiting to have grandchildren to fill in this burdensome silence and emptiness in the house.

Maybe waiting is what keeps us going – if we get to pause and tell ourselves, ‘this is it, this is the day I’ve been waiting for, now it is here so the waiting is over”. But it doesn’t work that way. We cannot stay in the moment because tomorrow is already sucking us in, disguised under some fancy term like “life planning”. So we are always in the present with just one foot, the other has already stepped into the future, testing the water, foreseeing the events of tomorrow.

Staying in the moment is an art, neglected by most people, who are convinced that life is too hectic and we cannot afford to stop: we will simply get run over by the ever-increasing and speeding life-ball – bills, mortgage, retirement planning, investment, savings… But catching happy moments is essential for you to keep it real, to stay in touch with your life as it is , at this very second. Otherwise it’s just waiting to die, because living in tomorrow only gets you closer to that one final day, when there is no longer tomorrow, no more planning, anticipation – this day is all you have left. If only you didn’t waste so many other days that preceded it.

Learn how to stop and appreciate the luxury of having each day we were given. Have your mental camera ready to take a snapshot of random moments that make this day unique: music you hear on the subway; a cute but sad puppy tied up to the meter, waiting for the owner to come back; snow-covered trees through the windows of your bus on the way home; a spontaneous tight hug from your child. What are your favorite moments of TODAY?

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