Tuesday, April 13, 2010

Living in the Moment

I'm getting asked more and more if I'm excited about our upcoming adventure and move to Korea. I'm also asked if I'm "checking out" at work. The short answer is "no." A somewhat better answer is "not really." An even better answer calls for a longer explanation, so here it goes.

A few years ago I tuned in to a podcast with Oprah and Eckhart Tolle on his book A New Earth. I've not read the book, but the discussions on the podcast covered all of the chapters in great detail. The essence of the book seemed to be about changing our focus from being "inside our heads" to living in the moment. As a person who had often lived in my head or contemplated the future, I was quite interested in this concept. And so I began to work to live in the moment. It took several months, but I believe I made quite a bit of progress.

Now I find myself thinking JUST ONCE what I have to do today rather than dwelling on the mental list. Yes, sometimes this causes me to forget something, but not often. In the meantime I have LIVED.

This doesn't mean that I've given up keeping a calendar or lists of things to do, but I spend little time on them.

It DOES mean that when I walk my dog I now am aware of the air on my skin, the temperature, the birds singing, squirrels running, the new growth on the trees and bushes, the way the light hits the treetops, the look on my dog's face as he runs back to me, the smell of the undergrowth or car exhaust. In the past these things would have been bypassed for thoughts in my head. They all would have been still occurring, but I wouldn't have felt, seen, heard, or smelled them.

And this takes me to my point about our upcoming adventure. I'm excited that a change is coming, but I rarely dwell on it. (Today I spent a minute anticipating that I will maybe be in a faculty that primarily embraces change; what a difference! But after that moment I returned to simply doing what I was doing, which happened to be dodging cars in the parkinglot on my way to the front door.) And that's how the minutes and hours primarily pass. It means that I tend to experience the here and now more fully than I ever did before(be it a precious moment with my kids or a stressful moment at work). It means that I haven't checked out at work because the here and now demands my attention. It also means that Korea isn't very real to me yet - simply because I'm not living it yet!

I'm enjoying life this way quite a bit! I invite my readers to do the same. Need a quick way to put yourself back in the moment? Think about your breathing. It works!

1 comment:

  1. I love this! Thank you for bringing me back and putting things into perspective!


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