Being In The Moment
One of the most fantastic aspects of opening myself up to blogging has been the wonderfully supportive community I have had the privilege to ‘meet’ online. As you may remember my post about Wonder Women, my friends and acquaintances have all been very encouraging all throughout this process of dealing with my CSF leak, of course. But, I have had the bonus of connecting with other bloggers who provide tips and tricks about the blogging world that I had no idea I needed. Nor did I know that all these folks existed on social media sites that help to support each other.
One person I have recently connected with is a wonderful blogger named Melissa Davidson who sees life in many of the same ways as I do. I asked her if she would be willing to write a guest post for me and she immediately said: ‘YES’.
So here are some thoughts about living in the moment by Melissa Davidson, author of The Plunj.
5 Ways To Live In The Moment
Life is full of beauty, wonder and amazement, but how often do we take in any of it? Between running errands, going to work and toting kids around, it often feels as if there’s no time left to just, be. And once we do get a moment to ourselves, we are often so consumed with stewing over past events and preparing for what’s ahead we can’t enjoy what’s right in front of us right now. This is why days feel as though they fly by; weeks turn into months and months turn into years, all in the blink of an eye.
We become so swept up in the thoughts of yesterday and tomorrow of which we can’t do anything about. The present, however, is another story. The present is all ours and we can change it instantly, we can enjoy it and we can share it with others. You don’t need to wait for the perfect time to enjoy what’s around you, the opportunities are right in front of you for the taking.
It may take a little practice, but you can make living in the moment second nature. Here are a few tips you can start using right now to enjoy each moment and ensure you don’t let everyday monotony sweep them away.
1. Be your six-year-old self
Do not, and I repeat, do not think that just because you are an adult you need to adhere to some unwritten rules about adult etiquette. Of course you need to be a decent human being, so no tantrums, but this world should be viewed no differently than when you were six—as if you are an explorer. When you allow yourself to explore this world and try new things, your senses become heightened and you can get back to being who you really are—that kid we abandoned when life got so serious.
We only have so much time in this world and there is so much to experience, whether you are six or 60. Need to get motivated? Think ahead to how you’re going to reflect on your life when you’re 80. Will you be happy you took all the opportunities you had to get out and live or will you be full of regrets because you didn’t take any chances. Keeping this perspective is a great way to muscle through fears you may have about exploring so you can try new things and take the plunge toward a new life.
If you want to dance then dance, if you want to sing then sing, just trust your gut and let your inner child free. You’ll not only feel as though a weight is lifted, but you’ll also learn more about yourself and may even discover your passion.
2. Stop living in someone else’s moment
Most of us wake up early to get ready for work, wait in traffic for 30 minutes, sit at a desk for 8 hours at a job we don’t even like, and then head home to meet the demands of our families i.e. dinner, kids baths, etc. We are constantly living in the moment of someone else and it often feels robotic as though others are dictating our every move. Doing this day after day takes its toll and can make us feel disconnected from ourselves.
But you can re-connect with yourself. Remember you are in control of your life and simply doing something out of the ordinary on your terms is one of the quickest ways you can get in touch with yourself again.
Take a new route to work, have your children help you with dinner, give in to those spur-of-the-moment urges, such as stopping for ice cream, or engage in a dart gun war with your kids. Whatever the event, it doesn’t have to be monumental or planned. It can just be a little tweak of the current situation, but it’s often enough to make you reframe the world around you, boost your senses and allow you to tap into your inner self.
Don’t just hear people when they talk to you, truly listen. When you listen to others you engulf yourself in the conversation and form deeper connections with those around you. We are social creatures and when we form deep connections we are naturally happier. Think about it. When you’ve had a meaningful conversation with someone who listened to you how did it make you feel? You likely felt good, respected and drawn to that person because they valued what you had to say. When you listen to others, they’ll likely be drawn to you as well.
Lend an ear, ask questions, enjoy the conversation, and don’t worry about what you’ll say next, just relax.
Our devices should really be called time vampires because we can spend hours scrolling through Facebook with nothing to show for it but the empty feeling of inadequacy thanks to all the keeping-up-with-the-Jones’ posts. Social media is a far cry from the really human connections we innately need.
We all know we spend way too much time on our phones and tablets, but admitting that is not the same as actually doing something about it.
Unplug. Seriously, unplug. It’s easier than you think. Your time with your own thoughts and with your family is way more important and will make you feel far better than an app or meme ever will. You need to take that time and not just be present for it, but live it.
If you’re not quite ready, start slow and gradually work your way up to more and more time 100 percent disconnected. Or try making it a family rule and take turns coming up with creative ideas on how you can spend your time together.
Meditation can do wonders for clearing the mind of the daily clutter and also bring inner peace. It doesn’t have to be the traditional meditation that I know you’re picturing; legs crisscrossed, arms lightly placed on knees, the humming of “ohm” in the background.
Meditation can be done anywhere by simply allowing each of your senses to take in the moment around you; smelling the air, feeling the wind against your skin, or hearing the hustle and bustle of the day. Focus on one sense at a time to push out the thoughts of the past and future and embrace the now. You’ll feel more calm, grateful and simply happier.
You can also try traditional meditation by blocking out all thoughts. It doesn’t have to be complicated. This too can be done anywhere. Try it for a few minutes in the morning during your shower, on your way to work or while having a cup of coffee on the deck. It’s a great way to start your day.
Being more present so we can truly savor each and every moment we’ve been gifted is not hard, but rather a feat in restructuring our habits. It takes about 30 days to form a new habit so try a few things and see what sticks. What do you have to lose? Best of luck!
Do you have any tips you use to be more present? I’d love to hear what works for you. Email me: Melissa@theplunj.com
Melissa is a mom, blogger and freelance writer born and raised in North Dakota, USA. She has a love for tea, DIY projects and helping others discover their true potential. Follow her at The Plunj: www.facebook.com/theplunj, www.pinterest.com/the_plunj/ and www.theplunj.com
I hope you find The Plunj to be SOMETHING WONDERFUL too!
Love Ingrid x