Being Present – letting go of distraction
If you are caught up in the fears and anxiety regarding the “Future” (and the Unknown) or living with the grief, sadness, anger, or shame from an experience of the “Past” then you are not fully “Present” and able to live in Joy. It is difficult to put the fear of the Future or upset from the Past out of your consciousness, however, it is a skill that you can develop AND it will improve your life to know how to do so.
Meditation, breathing, and deep relaxation are the keys to learning to let go of distractions. Letting go of distractions is the key to building and internal environment which can lead to “Being Present” in your current body (also referred to as your current “Meat Suit.”) It is easier said than done, but, reducing or eliminating your FEAR, Anxiety, stress, “craziness,” and “Ego” will lead to opening up to feel the “source” of energy and wisdom that we are all a part. Being present can be a wonderful place of observation and no judgement. Useful because we are all one with each other but learning our lessons as we all move toward greater awareness and higher consciousness. Even the most seemingly difficult people we encounter are actually perfect beings who can provide us with an experience that we are here to learn from in this life (incarnation.) The more “challenging” the more important the lesson. Not being in “Judgement” is so much easier to say than to do because the “Ego” (which creates false separations) wants to compare ourselves with others in “better” or “worse” scenarios rather than seeing all other people as equal pilgrims on the same path toward becoming more conscious beings of love and light.
So the “trick” of being present begins with focusing on the Present… Slowly breathe, feel the cool air as you inhale and the warm breath as you exhale. Slow and deepen your breath by pausing gently between inhale and exhale. Perhaps you can even imagine that as you exhale you release thoughts, emotions, stress, fear, anxiety, and anger as you slowly release the warm exhale. Begin to let the excess energy flow out and away. (Though this takes practice, you can develop this skill.) If your mind will not slow down, then slowly count down from 50 with “50” being the inhale and then “49” being the slow exhale and then “48” slow inhale and “47” exhale, etc. The numbers counting down will give the mind something to do.
Another exercise is to go out into nature and sit comfortably. Breathe slowly noticing the inhale and exhale as above. Then, as you settle back into whatever you are sitting upon, begin to use all of your senses to notice the beauty which surrounds you. If your eyes are open, look to see the sky and the clouds, or the birds or the trees. FEEL the warmth of the sun or the warm breezes which blow against you. HEAR the sounds of the birds, or of the waves/running water, or of the breezes. You may be able to smell the fragrance of the grasses, or the trees, or the salt air, or of the flowers. Use all of senses to appreciate the natural surroundings and allow you to find yourself more present.
You can also feel for your pulse (or heartbeat). When you slow your breathing you can learn to slow your heartbeat and this will enable you to be more calm and peaceful.
Some people will “lose” themselves in soft, soothing music or in a warm bath. Anything that you can focus upon which allows for a slowing and gently state of mind and body can be used to assist you being more “present.” A gentle, comfortable massage experience helps many people to learn what relaxation can feel like and be used as a tool to get more peaceful when you meditate on your own.
Find the technique that works best for you. Regular, maybe daily, practice will help you learn how to gain the benefits o being calm and “present.” It will take some repetition over time to learn to quiet the mind and relax to the deeper levels. It is worth the effort!
Audio Downloads: Relaxation series, or Panic/anxiety, or sleep, or pain management
Book Download: Breathing chapter, meditation chapter, stress management techniques