Our everyday life is often hectic. We are rushing from deadlines to presentations, write a few mails in between and eat lunch at the warm glow of our computer screen, instead of getting out of the office for a break. After closing time the rush continues with personal commitments of all kinds; family, working out, volunteering and everything in between.
And when we’ve finally got to the end of our To Do – list, our brain is still working overtime. It’s the time when thoughts are roaming freely in our heads. The mind drifts into the past und ponders uncomfortable situations. Or it wanders to the future, plans the next holiday trip or big investments like buying a house or maybe even starting a new career. Whether it’s draining or energizing both types of ruminations don’t have any meaning because only the here and now is tangible.
There is only Now
In our daily life with all its commitments and ruminations about the past and plans for our future we tend to forget the present moment, the Now. We cannot change the past, no matter how often we spin the thoughts in our heads. And the future isn’t set in stone. Sure, we can plan big and even smaller events in life, but all the careful planning isn’t a guarantee that it will really happen like you’ve planned it. You could get hit by a lorry tomorrow, to put it bluntly. All the planning is wipe out in a second. Only today, this very moment, is real.
Back to the here and now with gratitude and mindfulness
Mindfulness and gratitude are only two ways to become more aware of the Now. You can’t be aware of every single moment throughout the whole day. That would be way too exhausting. But you can put some moments of awareness back into your day. You can eat one meal a day with attention, for example. Or you just sit down for a minute of two to simple be aware of your breathing. What I love to do is writing a gratitude journal. Every evening I write down three things I’m grateful for or that made me happy that day. Even on bad days I manage to find something that has been nice. It’s often small things I’m writing down. Things I usually wouldn’t notice in the rush of the day. This little habit helps to remind you that there are good things happening every single day.
Maybe you’d like to try out this little exercise for a while. Or do you already have your own way of stopping the hamster wheel in your head? Share your experiences in the comments. I’d love to about it.