Too often we live under the pressure of the future and the weight of the past, when in reality what we can intervene on is only the present. Limiting our way of life based on what has been and what will be can lead us to a negative state of mind.
Last update: May 03, 2020
Learning to live in the present offers great benefits; yet, living making the most of the present moment doesn't always seem to be easy. It often happens that the protagonists of our life are anxiety and sadness. Does it happen to you too?
We remember the past with nostalgia, those moments when we laughed so much that we had tears or those we were convinced would last forever. We imagine and make a thousand plans for tomorrow in search of the perfect future. An effort that often requires a great deal of time and energy. Many of us spend our time like this, planning for the future and remembering the past with nostalgia. But let's see in this article how to learn to live in the present.
The anxieties of the past
We have to admit it, we have all made a blast from the past at least once with the memory. There is nothing wrong with that, we are human beings and as such we define ourselves starting from our memories. As our life progresses, we are tempted to retrace the past because in the present we do not find stimuli and positive sensations. It is in these moments that we tend to cling to our best memories as if they were our most precious treasure.
The problem is that sometimes our desire to anchor ourselves in the past ends up numbing our growth. We are fighting a battle that risks damaging our psychological health, above all if we relive the past obsessively, without enjoying the present.
There are memories that they awaken in us emotions capable of arousing great malaise. We are talking about sadness and guilt, capable of undermining our emotional state; especially if we are unable to manage the side effects.
“You couldn't have done it differently, because you didn't do it differently. Everything you have done in the past is perfect for the level of consciousness you had at that time. If you see it differently now, celebrate your awareness, but don't allow the ego to control you with its most powerful weapon: guilt. "
The uncertainty of a future to be built
We have all made these arguments. Those in which thoughts follow one after the other without the possibility of interrupting them, generating an excessive concern for the future. This habit, very widespread in today's society and deeply rooted in our lifestyle, forces our minds to waste resources, trapped in a state of continuous alert.
The future scares us; the fear it arouses is given by the potential scenario, full of threats, that we imagine. We are talking about a mental process that, as a species, we have often used to survive. Yet this strategy fails when we are unable to erect a wall of uncertainty or prevent and stem our anxiety.
"True generosity towards the future consists in giving everything to the present."
Here and now: our new range of action
The only reality on which we can really intervene is the present. It is where life happens, it is what happens just as you are reading these lines. We can only enjoy the present, of the small moments from which life is composed.
When we travel into the past and into the future, the important thing is to be able to use all our skills to objectively recognize the obstacles that these bring as a dowry. It is important to learn to untie our emotions from the situation and be able to identify new paths to move forward. To do this, the best technique is to focus on the present moment and learn to live in the present.
We know, it's easier said than done; but with a little practice we will be able to add this attitude to our personality. The first step may be to embrace the idea that changes are positive. Life, after all, is change and evolution. Both are often within our reach from the present moment.
"The past is gone, what you are waiting for is absent, but the present is yours."
In his lectures and books on leadership and management, Francisco Alcaide speaks with great clarity about how we can manage our emotions and take control of our life:
- Look at the past with gratitude.
- Enjoy the present with enthusiasm.
- Building the future with hope.
And to you who are reading this article, let's say you are exactly where you should be… well on your way to learning to live in the present.
Learning to live in the present
Sometimes we have to curb the inertia of our emotional focus, directing it better. Stopping this agitation, or at least the dangerous inner dialogue we are used to, is fundamental. Only then will we be able to adopt a perspective that allows us to focus on the present moment and enjoy the present.
We can resort to mindfulness. It is a technique that helps to become fully aware of the present moment. A technique that provides us with the calm necessary to respond, and not just react, to the circumstances we face.
We must stop thinking about all the single moments that make up our life, also because thinking about it well, the most stimulating are those that come unexpectedly, not foreseen. We do not seek them, but we find them while we live, enjoying the present.