As an addict, I used to spend most of my time and energy avoiding living in the moment. My pre-occupation with using was not only about the times that I was under the influence. There was something about the obsessive preoccupation of when I was going to be able to use again that was also an addiction.
Imagine a life where one is never fully present in the moment. One only experiences an intense obsession about the future or disturbing regrets of the past. Joy is immediately sucked out of such a life and a feeling of endless dissatisfaction replaces it.
One of the incredible miracles of sobriety is the ability to be present in the moment. While its still somewhat of a practice for me, an experiment per se, I am working on enjoying the simplicity of just experiencing the here and now. Here are a few simple ways I practice being present in the moment.
5 SIMPLE WAYS TO BETTER EXPERIENCE THE MOMENT
1. MINDFUL BREATHING:
Sounds simple enough, but sometimes we forget the calming benefits of focusing on our breath. As I slowly take in a long breath, I envision that I am breathing in pure white air. As I breath out, I envision all the stress and anxiety coming out in my breath. Breathe in the light, breathe out the dark.
2. RECOGNIZE THE MOMENT:
In this moment, what are you feeling? What are your thoughts? Recognize them gently, do not judge them. Acknowledge them without judgement.
3. NOTICE YOUR PHYSICAL SENSATIONS:
Think of the warmth of the air on your skin, the feelings in your lungs as you breathe in and out, feel your body sitting in your chair or your feet planted on the ground. Spend a few moments simply feeling your physical sensations.
4. LET GO OF THE THOUGHTS OF PAST AND FUTURE
When worries of the past or the anxiety filled thoughts of the future come into your mind, recognize them and gently let them go. Come back to the moment by bringing your attention back to your breathing.
5. OBSERVE YOUR SURROUNDINGS
Look around and notice the brightness of the sun, the furniture in the room or the trees swaying in the wind out the window. Spend a few moments noting the colors and objects you see around you.
Take a few minutes each day to just be present. Feel the world around you and experience your thoughts and emotions simply as they are and in the moment. While it may not come easy at first, with some practice, the joyful simplicity of the power of now will come to you with more ease.