Typewriter Learn To Love Yourself

Be More Present – Part of the “Start a Movement” series


Today is the day to start a movement. The power of ONE is so much more effective than some might believe. Well, those naysayers are wrong and it’s time to prove it!

Recently I wrote a post about starting a movement and gave three “movement starting” ideas: be kinder, be more generous, and be more present. Over the next few weeks we’ll dive deeper into these topics and wrap it all up at the end with a way that you can truly make an “ocean wave” of a difference in the world.

Let’s take a look at ‘being more present.’ Take a look at this excerpt from my original post (you can read the entire post here).

Be more present:

Be there for your loved ones.

Don’t just sit in the same room and stare at the TV, read emails or frantically text each night without communicating. Have dinner together at the table; talk, laugh, ask each other how their day was. Engage with one another, because I guarantee you that life is way too short and someday you will be out of time (read my About page for more on this topic).

Please don’t wait for ‘someday’ to do the things that you want to do with your loved ones.

If you want to sit on the porch after dinner and enjoy the breeze, watch the neighborhood bustling, with a drink of tea in your hands just chatting – do it. If you want to go for a drive, go for a walk, go for a hike, or go for a bike ride – do it. If you want to go to the park, go to a yard sale, explore the local library or the local public landmarks in your town – do it. If you want to fly a kite, play ball, play tennis, toss a frisbee, shoot the hoops or go swimming at the local rec center – do it.

There’s no time like the present to be, to just be…..with your loved ones.

If an opportunity comes knocking to spend some time with someone you care about, but you feel your ‘life’ is too hectic to take time to spend with them…..read the obvious sign that life is trying to give you that LIFE IS ABOUT SPENDING TIME WITH THOSE YOU LOVE.

Life is not about work, or money, or homework, or bills, or rushing to and from to constantly do everything. Life is about being, not doing. Slow down and just enjoy time together, in each other’s presence, talking and listening to what is really going on in each other’s heads. I promise you that it is not wasting time.

Let’s look at some of the key points here:

  • Do you text your spouse or your kids?
  • Do you do it daily?
  • Here’s the kicker…do you do it while you are in the house or car together? Yikes!

When’s the last time you turned off all technology in your house for an evening or a Saturday afternoon? When’s the last time you just talked, read together, played a board game (“What’s a board game, mom and dad?”)? Do you even own any board games?

Do you recall the last time you went outside after you got home from work and went for a walk, played hopscotch, tossed a football or played catch? I guarantee you – if you have children, the time to spend with them is NOW, not tomorrow or next week or when you go on vacation, but NOW.

Do you and your spouse ever go on walks together? Why not?

Don’t you love each other? Do you remember holding hands when you were first dating? Do you remember just hanging out and talking for hours on end? There are those who might say “He/She knows how I feel about her/him. Why do I have to spend long hours talking with him/her now?” If you love your significant other, stop reading right now and go tell them you do. I promise to wait right here while you go do that – it’s important. Go do it now. I’ll wait….

Oh good, you’re back!!!

I hope they enjoyed the pleasant and unexpected surprise of you calling them or coming up to them and just saying “I love you.” Those are such wonderful words to hear.

What if you haven’t met that someone special yet?

Can you still enjoy just being present, just living in the moment? Absolutely!! Leo Babauta talks about it some on his site here. He frequently points back to a method of being present in doing everything. Every. Little. Thing.

Even activities such as washing the dishes can be performed more ‘mindfully’ and therefore bring you to a state of ‘being more present’ (see bullet #5 in his post). Based on that interpretation, you can enjoy being more present anywhere, at any time, in any situation, and reap the rewards that it can bring to your life.

The rewards of being more present

Practice being more present – daily. The rewards can be extremely beneficial and uplifting; benefits such as inner peace or a renewed sense of calmness. These are very similar to the rewards that meditation brings: a lower heart rate, lower blood pressure, a more relaxed overall state of being and mentality.

Try a simple exercise of being more present and aware while you sit here, now. Breathe in slowly while you count to three; hold your breathe for a count of three; then exhale slowly for a count of three. Now, do it again – but this time close your eyes and pay close attention to your lungs as they fill up with air and again as they expel the air. Do you hear anything while you breathe? Do you feel the air passing through your nose, your throat, your chest, your stomach as you inhale and exhale? Congratulations – you’ve just practiced being more present in the moment. The moment of just breathing.

Practice being more present

If you practice being more present in your life, let me know how it worked for you. I love hearing how things worked, or didn’t work, when you put the wheels of action into motion.

I’m going to do the dishes now….and I think I will choose to emulate Leo and really focus on being more present while I do them.