Written by Amy Scalia
After the wild ride that 2020 has been, we’re all eagerly awaiting the calendar’s flip to 2021. But while there’s big excitement for the new year, there will be lots of special little moments in between — and after. With more reasons than ever to stay present, here are six steps to helping you stay, and find comfort, in the moment.
- Make a Commitment to Remain Present
A healthy mindfulness and being present requires some effort and commitment. Creating a routine is the key to making it feel more second nature. A great way to start is by spending a few moments each morning — journaling or just quietly sipping your coffee with focused thoughts — reminding and preparing yourself to enjoy the day for what it has to offer and to make the most of it.
- Develop a System
Now that you’ve started your day off right, you’ll want to develop a system for reminding yourself to remain present throughout the day. This can be as simple as setting a reminder on your phone, or scheduling a 15-minute block in your calendar, to bring you back to the present moment. Find some time each day for meditation or a mindfulness practice where you focus only on what the present has to offer.
- Become Aware of the Physical
Becoming more in-tune with the physical sensations that the present moment provides is a big part of practicing being present. Be aware of pain or tension, hunger or an upset stomach, headache or clouded thoughts, hot or cold, or other physical needs that may need to be addressed. As you scan each section of your body for these physical sensations, notice and address what needs attention. When you practice focusing more on these physical needs, you’ll not only take better care of yourself, you will be more likely to remain in the present instead of focusing on the future.
- Stay Conscious of Your Thoughts
Your thoughts are powerful, so try to keep them as positive and present-focused as possible. If you find yourself veering off into negative thoughts or worrying about the future, shift your focus back to positive thinking about the here and now. This is especially important if it’s a moment that should be enjoyable. Whether it’s spending time with your friends and family (even if just virtually), connecting with nature, or reading a book, make an effort to be present — keeping your mind focused on what you’re seeing and experiencing — rather than thinking about what’s ahead.
- Be Aware of Your Surroundings
We live in a fascinating and beautiful world, but it’s easy to get caught up in the whirlwind of life and miss it. Look more closely at your surroundings, then think carefully about what’s going on. What are some observations about what’s happening around you? Are there people or animals around? What are they doing? Is there anything beautiful or interesting about your surroundings? It may seem silly to some, but being aware of seemingly simple things around you – the simpler the better – helps you to stay in the moment.
For those scheduled times of meditation and mindfulness, create a space that’s both practical for your routine and aesthetically pleasing, like a Meditation Pouf, Yoga Pillar Candle, or Ten to Zen coffee table book. A calming candle, meditation stones and cleansing crystals also offer comfort and functionality. Add energy and motivation by diffusing the Energy Oil blend.
- Enjoy Where You Are
A waiting mindset breeds impatience, and impatience breeds frustration. Who wants that? Truth is, waiting is a choice. So, rather than choosing to wait, you can instead choose to enjoy life’s moments as they come.
Take someone at a bus stop, for example. If you were to ask this person what they were doing, most would say they were waiting for a bus. But what if their response was that they were sitting on a bench enjoying the sunrise and some fresh air? When the bus arrives, they’ll hop aboard and go about their day. Until then, they’re just enjoying the present moment rather than anxiously staring at their watch and traffic.
Imagine how much that shift from a waiting mindset to an in-the-moment mindset improved their day. Now, imagine how it could improve yours.