Staying Present and Being In The NOW

“Life is not a race, but a journey to be savored each step of the way.  Yesterday is history, tomorrow is a mystery, and today is a gift; the reason today is called the present.”

The Think Caregiver™ monthly focus this past May was presence and much effort was put forth in trying to understand how to go about living and attending to each moment as it happens.

Thich Nhat Hanh tells us that if we can become mindfully aware of the NOW, great understanding can occur with self. Sitting in the moment and being in the NOW is paying attention to the pause between where you were and where you are going.

Time and Mindful Meditation

Ways to Savor Being in the NOW

Being present in everything we do is in art. Along with our Think Caregiver Simple Suggestions™, we share a monthly pick three that includes an essential oil, a flower, and a tea. While our essential oil pick for the month was the doTERRA InTune blend, our tea and flower pick did not have a specific preference. Instead, it was suggested to choose the presence of all teas and of all flowers.

Smelling the aroma of the tea, feeling the temperature or tasting the essences of the leaves is a way of savoring being in the NOW. Looking at the beauty of the petals of the flower, smelling the scent or feeling the softness with your hands helps to quiet the body and mind.

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The Difficulties of Being In The NOW

If we allow for this process of being in the NOW of those moments, we can begin to feel the emotional benefits. I will admit it is hard to stay in the NOW, in the moment and to always achieve presence. 

I believe part of the reason for this lies within evaluating yesterday or past moments in time and/or always planning for tomorrow. We spend a lot of time living in the past, thinking about what we could have done better or different, even wishing for the good old days. We also spend a lot of time thinking about scheduling time, trying to accomplish something or planning for an event.

Our history is there for a reason. It helps to teach us lessons so that we can avoid repeating mistakes.  Planning for tomorrow is not a bad thing, either. It allows us to schedule visits with friends, doctor’s appointments, and life events. I think where the problem lies is with the understanding of what it means to be present, in the moment.

Positive Effects of Expressing Gratitude

Think about driving your car from your home to the store. Have you ever driven somewhere and when you arrive not be able to remember anything about the drive? Do you wonder how you even got there? Park the car, go in the store and then not be able to find your car when you leave the store?

This is an example of not living in the moment, not being present. Next time you drive somewhere, pay attention to all the details. Engage your senses. While touching the steering wheel, ask the question, how does it feel against your hands? What are you seeing? Glance and pay attention to the sky, the car passing, the buildings, or the scenery. Continue to experience the drive with all of your senses. Do you smell anything? Are you hearing anything? If you can do this, you are living in the moment and being in the NOW. This is the presence of all things. Move forward today, engage in the now and keep this thought close to you. “You’re a gift, open up, be present.”

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