“The more we focus on the time of the past and the future, the more we miss the present, the more valuable we have.” ~ Eckhart Tolle
where are you now?
Maybe you’re at your desk, scrolling through your email and trying to postpone your morning work in the hope that it’s gone if you don’t admit it.
Maybe you’re sitting in your favorite chair over a cheap coffee and enjoying the last moment of the morning light.
You may be walking in a school or office building trying to read this from your cell phone in a hurry before hitting someone.
Whenever you find yourself sitting, standing, or walking, I would like to ask you another question:
Are you really there?
where are you now? Really?
Much of life in our culture today is about: Next project. Next promotion. Next vacation. Next experience. We are obsessed with growth related to results, achievements, and respected and successful lives.
I forgot how to be here … now.
I forgot to exist.
I wanted to be in the same room as my wife this morning instead of being trapped in the office, so now I’m sitting on the couch and writing this. I’m listening to the cello with my right earphone. I’m typing my favorite writing software, but I don’t seem to like the 7 year old Macbook and it keeps crashing.
But earlier this morning, one of my favorite podcasters, Emily P Freeman, asked this question.
“Where are you?”
And before I can say “In the shower after running in the morning” My inner voice (annoyingly honest voice) said:
“You are 10 years away.
You want you to have a thriving business and people who really listen to you.
You have the freedom to travel or look forward to spending more time with the people you love.
You are not in this shower right now.
You are a thousand steps ahead because you want prizes without work.
You want a destination without a trip.
You want your dreams slowly, steadily, and sometimes without frustrating routines.
You do not exist at that moment, but spend all your energy to live in the future. So, even if you get there, even if you get there, you’re not there.
You are always 10 years away. “
This also applies to me.
Most of my life is either 10 years after all my dreams come true. conduct Knowing what I was talking about, I proved I wasn’t a scammer, and others listen to me …
… or I’m excited to graduate from college 10 years ago, learn to be a leader, and get married, but I’m always free to play sand volleyball with many fun friends who don’t have equal crowded schedules. Or children.
If I’m not in one of these two places in my head, I’m usually overwhelmed by one or both of them.
I am overwhelmed by the reality of where I am and feel the guilt and shame that accompanies my thoughts.
“You should be more than ever.”
That is exactly the killer.
The idea that I should be.
Be more successful.
Better with my money … I have more.
I traveled more.
More, more, more, more.
That’s where I spend most of the time— —I’m ashamed of nothing more.
So I hide it.
Hide your anger in the harsh attitude of your boss.
It’s hidden behind consuming entertainment, so you don’t have to create it.
Hiding behind the junk hood reduces hopelessness … until it hits the waistline.
hide. Because hiding is easier than feeling pain and much easier than giving grace to where I am.
One day, when I was lagging behind what I should be, I went to the bathroom. While washing my hands, I looked at the man’s face looking back at me in the mirror and literally thought:
“I would rather have a fun, deep, real Curtis from college, or a wise, disciplined, successful Curtis of the future. I’ll take any Curtis, but I have I’ll take things. “
How is your sad awareness?
Let’s ask again. where are you now?
So let me give you some good advice.
As you know, it’s one of the wise things we all know and say, but we never give our own advice. Yeah, such advice.
The place you are today is the most important place you can.
That is correct.
Being where you are now.
It’s not a place you’ve been to.
Not where you wanted to be.
It’s not the place you really want when.
At this moment, in this place, on this sofa, in this town, these people are in the midst of this situation.
This is your moment.
This is the moment to make you.
If you don’t know how to actually be there wherever you go, what is the benefit of being more successful, more disciplined, more respected, richer and more traveled? How to feel it completely? To live the experience perfectly in time in that space?
What’s good if you can’t breathe in all the life around you?
In the dusty and boring little town of Lubbock, Texas, there were better moments than many spent behind the scenes at the tops of mountains in Nepal, the streets of Venice, chartered plane seats, and concerts.
By putting my dog and morning light on the back porch and constantly chasing this MORE idea, I’ve lived more lives than most people would experience.
And the only reason I could accept these everyday moments and feel alive is now here, even for a short while, I worked hard to get rid of more illusions. Because I practiced being there.
It’s time to give more advice. are you ready?
Everything in life requires learning, practice, and repetition.
Learning means looking like an idiot to learn the basics.
Learning a language means making mistakes and sounding like 3 years old.
That means practicing with someone better than you.
That means to repeat “The library is in the center of the city” Over and over again.
Learning to play the cello means playing the strings for months when you want to use the bow.
That means playing a “hot cross bun” until you hear it in your dreams.
This means repeating the four notes over and over again until the finger appears to be playing on its own.
Learning to be a parent, friend, or spouse means making mistakes, seeking forgiveness, trying different ways, rinsing and repeating the same cycle millions of times. Life … and they do the same for you.
The existence at this moment is no exception.
Learning is required.
It requires practice and mistakes.
It requires disciplined repetition until it is almost of the second nature.
So where should we start?
I started from 5 minutes on a park bench.
I arrived at a place where nothing was requested.
You don’t have to entertain your child.
There is no half-baked homework.
There are no floors to clean or dishes to clean up.
I have no distracting friends or fun activities.
You have set the phone to silent mode. This means there are no text messages, calls or notifications and I set the timer to 5 minutes.
For five minutes, which felt like an hour, I was completely silent.
Sometimes I closed my eyes, and sometimes I saw grass, birds, and water.
But for five minutes, I didn’t solve the problem, plan ahead, make a strategy, or prepare for something to come.
For 5 minutes I just sat and breathed.
It was very difficult and beautiful.
Do this daily, or if you really have the courage, multiple times a day for at least a week, and you’ll be here to reduce stress, focus, and be more productive.
This is a great place to get started.
Being here may be one of the most difficult things in my life. Sometimes you need to have great joy and great pain in the same hand. It can feel like it may pull us apart or drown us in the reality of our struggle.
But if done on a regular basis and treated with the utmost care, elegance and patience for the process, it is one of the most free parts of the journey I have ever recommended.
The place you are now is not perfect. It may not be ideal. But that’s your reality.
And if you don’t start with reality and you can’t handle this moment gracefully, there’s no real hope for the future.
So I’ll ask you again, my friend: Where are you now?