Being present in the moment in today’s world.

“How are you doing? I’m good, busy! You? I am fine, yeah, I’ve been really busy lately too.” You are probably part of this conversation every day if it is not multiple times a day! Our lives are getting more and more busy; work, family, social life, exercising, cooking… When are you taking some time for yourself? You are probably thinking NEVER right now, simply because you have no time at all, you barely find enough time to sleep at night and to drink water throughout the day, how could you possibly take some time for yourself? Well, when I am talking about taking time for yourself, I don’t mean taking a relaxing bath, getting a massage, or spending an entire day by yourself doing things you enjoy, even if I know you love those things! What I am really talking about here is being in the present moment and practicing mindfulness. 

We are so busy in our everyday lives that even when we are doing something we already think about the next thing that we have to do. At home in the morning we think about work, at work we think about the nice dinner we will have tonight, and when we get home, we are thinking about the million chores we will have to do in the next few days! Life can feel like it is spinning and going so fast at times, and this is when mindfulness can be helpful. It does not have to be fancy; you simply have to be in the moment and focus on what you are doing. How is your body feeling? Are you relaxed or tense? How is your breathing, is it slow, is it shallow? Try to focus on it for a moment, focus on a few breathing cycles. If your mind starts to wander, try to refocus on your breathing, breathe in and breathe out. If you are doing something, stop for a second, give yourself a break from life. Relax, forget about the million things you have to do today and focus on you and your breathing. Focus on your body, on your mind, and say something positive to yourself. “You are doing great”, “I am proud of you”, “You can and you will do this”. 

The importance here is just to allow yourself to take a small moment dedicated to you and to your mental health. This is pretty simple and can be done multiple times a day, anywhere you would like! You can practice it when you are stressed to try to relax, you can do it when you are tired and looking for some inner energy, or you can even do it while eating, to make sure you are enjoying your food. What matters the most is to be in the present moment and to take time to refocus on you and on how you are feeling. You should be nonjudgmental about how you are feeling, you should recognize it and come back to a more neutral state. So next time you are feeling overwhelmed, give mindfulness a try so you can recenter and be fully present in the moment.