“Live in the present moment” is definitely a buzz phrase right now. But what does it actually mean? Well think about it…as human beings, we spend most of our time stuck up in our heads. Wondering, wallowing, worrying. Speculating, scrutinising, surmising. Replaying, ruminating, rehearsing. We’re almost always in a trance about the past or the future. Even when our awareness is on a present event, it usually involves some kind of speculation about how we are coming across or what the other person is thinking. And it uses up so much of our mental energy (not to mention often sending our bodies into fight-or-flight mode which leads to a whole host of ramifications). Rarely are we truly experiencing a moment as it is. Without judgment. Without commentary. Just purely as it is. This is what “live in the present moment” refers to. But of course, it is easier said that done.
Here’s a mindfulness hack inspired from our brand new meditation sequence; We can only ever perceive inputs using our sense organs in real time. We’re talking sight, smell, sound, taste, and touch. They happen right here, in the “present moment”, so snatching our awareness out of our heads and into our senses is a powerful way of plugging into “the now”. Try it this week…whenever you find yourself moving from point A to point B (whether it be walking, driving, cycling etc), curiously notice all the different scents that you can smell as you travel. When your thoughts start to create commentary about the smells – analysing, judging, making associations to other smells, simply acknowledge these as thoughts and then bring your attention back to the smells reaching your nose. Have fun!