Exploring How to Live in the Moment
Living in the moment, which is also known as mindfulness, takes consistent effort. It also offers several crucial benefits. Fortunately, there are countless approaches that people who are intrigued by the concept can try.
Living in the moment means exactly what it says, according to Positive Psychology. The practice involves living in the present instead of allowing your focus to constantly be stolen by the past or future. It’s a commitment to focusing on what is happening in your life in this current time and place instead of being swept away by worries about the future or dreams of the past.
Realizing the Benefits of Mindfulness
Living in the moment isn’t easy, especially when you’re first beginning your practice. However, the effort does bring rewards. According to Psychology Today, cultivating mindfulness leads to notable benefits, including the following:
- Greater happiness, exuberance, and security
- Reduced stress
- Higher empathy
- Boosted self-esteem and confidence
- Higher immune functioning
- Reduced chronic pain
- Lower blood pressure
- Reduced risk of cardiovascular disease
- Greater ability to cope with significant illnesses like cancer
Learning How to Live in the Moment
Living in the moment is a challenge. If you think about the benefits, you’re focused on the future, so you’re no longer in the moment. If you’re distracted by memories of previous attempts, then you’re caught in the past. With mindfulness, your goal is to focus on the now. How do you do it? There are several strategies that might work for you:
- Embrace your senses. Use your senses to notice the world around you. Pay attention to how things smell, taste, and feel. Really look at the world around you, and listen to the sounds you encounter. Can you identify them all?
- Choose gratitude. Think about everything that you are grateful for in this exact moment. Your list can include big things, small things, or odd things. If you appreciate it, include it.
- Avoid multitasking. Rushing to complete multiple tasks in an overlapping muddle without a breath means that you don’t pause to value the moment. You miss too much! Make it a point to complete chores one at a time with a break in between so that you can feel the satisfaction of a job well done.
- Practice acceptance. Feelings, good and bad, are valid. Instead of running from them, accept them and work through them so that you can move on.
- Perform kindness. Kindness makes both those who give it and those who receive it feel better. Do your part to spread positivity by performing acts of kindness when you’re able to do so. Share a smile, hold a door, or offer a friendly compliment.
- Breathe deeply. Deep breathing exercises challenge you to focus on the movement of air in and out of your body. There are infinite variations, so you can select one that you feel comfortable with.
- Practice mindfulness meditation. Mindfulness meditation is a specific kind of meditation that strives to help practitioners improve their awareness of their own thoughts and feelings.
- Exercise. Yoga, tai chi, qi gong, and other exercises can also help you develop the connection between your mind and body and hone your sense of mindfulness.
Learning to live in the moment is often an ongoing process. After all, breaking free from the ties of the past and future can be tricky. Be patient with yourself, and keep trying!