We experience life as a series of moments. The past, the future that we anticipate, and the moment which is right now. Being present makes you aware of what is happening for you in this moment. Why is this important? Because when you are present in this moment, and see what’s happening with yourself – emotions, sensations, feelings, the stories you are telling yourself – you have the capacity to make better decisions. Think of the process like this:
When you focus your ATTENTION.
Your INTENTION becomes clear.
You become AWARE of yourself
With the awareness you have cultivated, your CHOICES are easy to make. Your choices drive your ACTIONS.
And your RESULTS are an outcome from your attention and expectations.
Going through this process helps you ask yourself the following questions:
- What’s my goal?
- Where is our focus and energy?
- How am I experiencing this? What are my assumptions?
- What are my options?
- What roles do I need to play?
- Is this what I wanted or expected?
Remember, “where your energy flows, your attention goes”. So, if you are experiencing this moment, how does that affect your actions in the next one? Being present brings you to the point that you are asking yourself that question. Your actions become “choice” vs. “reaction”. Wouldn’t you rather decide on how you are going to “show up” for people, than showing up because the world just threw you a curveball?
By being present you will develop the capacity for using choiceful action. When you are present, and take different actions because you have made a thoughtful choice then you will have a different future. In each moment when you have a decision to make you can ask yourself: How am I feeling in my body? Am I getting messages I should pay attention to? What are my emotions right now in relation to this decision? Happy, fearful, anxious? What stories am I telling myself? Is this going to work out or not?
How you manage yourself affects everything else – your relationships, your body, your experiences. Learning to be present takes practice and focus but the outcome is a life that you have chosen vs. a life that happens to you. The outcome is your ability to achieve the results you desire.