Live in the now.

17 May

Last night in therapy we came to a pretty easy conclusion on what is causing all of my problems in life: I refuse to live in the moment.

One by one, we talked about all of my underlying issues, why I get stuck worrying about things and can’t seem to move past the worry and live my life, and every single one of them is because I can’t seem to live in the now.

Remember this?  It’s because I’m living in the past or in the future, not in the present.  I always want what I had or what I think I could have, when in reality, what I already have – at this moment! – is pretty incredible.  My constant fear of my dog running away?  He’s here now: live in the moment!  My desire to move back home?  I live in an amazing place with a good life.  My desire to head back East is based solely on my past experience with living there* and thinking it would be nothing but grand if I were to move back.  How do I know this?  Sure, I believe I’m my happiest there, but my unhappiness here won’t simply disappear with moving, I’ve proved that time and time again.  Presently, I’m in a fantastic place with a lot of benefits.  Succumb to the present!   My fear of pregnancy?  I can’t control the future and worrying about what-ifs will not get me anywhere.  What will be, will be.

LIVE. IN. THE. MOMENT.

Tim is really good at this.  I’m going to bank on the fact he’s 12 years older than me and because of that he’s learned how to master it in those years, and I have faith I will, too.  But how do I do it?  Where do I start?

Do any of you find yourself not being able to live in the moment, and only able to focus on the future or past?  If you have mastered living in the moment, how the hell did you do it?

I’ve been aware of this for a while now…but having it so plainly pointed out to me as the root of all of my unhappiness, really hit me.  I could so easily see that if I were simply here now, mind and body, life would be a whole lot easier.  And also?  A hell of a lot more fun.

I’m starting to work on it now, because it obviously can’t wait until the future.  (Sorry, I couldn’t help myself.)

* Ultimately, the fact my family lives there is a bigger pull on this one.  But I’d be lying to say that in my head, I don’t romanticize it and make it out to be the solution to all my problems.  

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8 Responses to “Live in the now.”

  1. Esperanza May 17, 2011 at 2:51 pm #

    The next time I see you I’m going to give you this little book that my friend’s mom gave me after my miscarriage. It’s called The Power of Now by Echart Toll (might be misspelling the author’s name). There is evidently a big book with the same name but this is a smaller book. It’s really good and speaks to exactly what you’re talking about right now. I promise I will bring that and When Things Fall Apart for you next time we see each other, which I hope is soon!

    • zygotta May 17, 2011 at 6:42 pm #

      i am going to pick up this book in the library!!!

  2. Esperanza May 17, 2011 at 2:54 pm #

    Oh, I also wanted to say that living in the moment is SO HARD TO DO. Buddhism speaks about it constantly, that is what meditation is after all, but it’s incredibly difficult. I struggle with it constantly. Even when I’m with my daughter and so happy to be there, I still find my mind darting every which way. It’s so hard to just keep it here, with me, in the present.

    I wrote this quote (which I continue to butcher) on Mo’s blog today. Worry does nothing to lessen tomorrow’s suffering, it only steals joy from today. As a chronic worrier I LOVE this quote. It really speaks to me. I hope I can remember it when the uncertainty of life is overwhelming, which is usually is.

    I’m glad you’ve made this important realization. I hope it helps!

  3. Mo May 17, 2011 at 3:27 pm #

    What I can say? Great minds think alike. Or something. 🙂 I think we could both benefit from esperanza’s words of wisdom. 🙂

    • bodegabliss May 17, 2011 at 3:28 pm #

      Maybe she should start a religion. Esperanza, will you be our master?

  4. Hope May 17, 2011 at 8:05 pm #

    I am such a worrier, and a daydreamer. I certainly haven’t mastered this living in the present thing. But one thing that occasionally helps, especially when I am obsessing, is to actively think about what I am doing or seeing or hearing, tell my self so that I drown out other thoughts. It can really help me refocus when I am spinning in circles over some future possibility that I have no control over.

    The other thing I like, for dealing with worry and negative thinking, is to come up with one or two positive mantras. These have to be things that you actually believe to be true (not things you hope will someday come true). For example, instead of telling myself I will have a successful pregnancy someday, but not quite believing myself, I remind myself that I have an excellent support team to help me on my family building journey.

    I know I’m coming off as if I have this all down pat–I don’t! I still worry and obsess and live in the future *all the time*. These things help when I remember them, but it’s remembering them that’s the key. That’s the hardest part for me.

    Good luck. I hope you find some peace in your current life, soon. (((Hugs)))

  5. Frozen Egg Bank Mom May 24, 2011 at 8:54 am #

    That is what seems like such a simple thing, live in the moment. For me, I have a difficult time with just going with the flow so even at work I have pictures to remind myself to just go with the flow, similar to live in the moment. I also clicked with this statement – “when in reality, what I already have – at this moment! – is pretty incredible.” We need to take a step back and realize what we have. I know exactly what you mean. Seems so easy but it’s so hard!

  6. starfishkittydreams May 29, 2011 at 11:36 pm #

    I totally have fantasies about living back East (because of positive memories of the past) and overly worry about the future. I waste a lot of time worrying about my cat dying and he’s alive and healthy today. I love your idea of trying to live more in the present and focus on what is around us. Being really busy sometimes helps because then there isn’t as much free time to let your mind wander and worry about other things.

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