“If you are depressed you are living in the past. If you are anxious you are living in the future. If you are at peace you are living in the present.”
― Lao Tzu
Being in the now… nowism… be in the present… but what does that mean??
For me, I feel it when I practice yoga. It is being mindful and aware of the task in hand, making the most out of our time. Nothing else matters, nowhere to go but to be where you are. Whether that is eating dinner, quality time with family/friends, completing a work task, listening to music, at the gym or practising yoga. Practice with intent. To do, whatever it is with full intent and attention. For e.g. quality/catch up time with loved ones, how much of that time are you sat on your phone? Eating your lunch, how fast are you eating or whilst eating worrying about something and not even chewing your food? Picking something up and pull a muscle? Exercising and injure yourself? Walking with phone in hand and trip up or walk into someone?
Honestly, I do most of the above. I am not sitting on a ‘at peace-all at one-yogi’ high horse! I have recently felt so disconnected, not feeling like myself, scattered, ungrounded and anxious… I am an over thinker; so not really knowing the root cause made me feel more anxious and even more unlike myself.
For those that have felt the same, I would love to hear what has helped you? I wanted to write this blog to share what helped me. Firstly, know that everything shall pass. To simply, let be and just BE. (Easier said than done of course …)
Being a busy bee, I have neglected quality self-practice time. For me, it makes such a huge difference when I don't practice daily; so I promised to practice daily again, even if its just to simply breath. Practice mindful breath work in the morning and then to set an intention-to set the pretense for the day! Be with the breath – using it as a tool to be present. (Link below to guided breath work)
Recommended by a friend, I listened to a podcast on the science of meditation. What clicked the most for me was the discussion on mind chatter. Mind chatter is so common for so many of us. We now live in a society, where our phones can do so many things instantly, we can read the news on many platforms, speak to friends all over the world, a click of a button order food or taxis, shop online or swipe for dates. We are in an era of instant gratification, constantly being entertained. So it is no wonder that when we actually find quiet time, peace, come to the yoga mat (to yoga or to meditate) we can’t sit still. Our minds are searching for the next thing to entertain us. Our mind chatters and wanders; we can’t just simply be in the present to absorb what is going on now. Our perception of our self is warped by all the chatter and emotion-filled thoughts. Sometimes we may feel bound by this mind chatter and get swept up in our thoughts of this constant discourse. Defining us, defining our actions and what we give out…vibes, body language, facial expressions, energy or speech.
What resonated for me was…
“I am not my emotions or my thoughts.” To simply tell myself this when i felt overwhelmed by emotions or thoughts.
Let it out
Spending so much time in my own head, without really realising the extent of what was going on inside… it was a relief to let it out. Out on paper, out loud, to talk to friends/family and to accept that it is okay to not feel okay.
To be kind
Ahimsa – non-violence. “Do not kill or hurt others”. To be kind with our feelings, thoughts, words and actions. To be compassionate towards ourselves and others.
Ahimsa is one of five Yamas; a moral, ethical guidelines for the practicing yogi.
Having spent a weekend with one of my girls, a much needed girl time, face masking, talking out loud about how I felt, going for a walk, yoga and making a healthy, colourful lunch; it was just what I needed!
So, be kinder and more compassionate with your thoughts and this will lead to kinder actions. Maybe try eating more mindfully and healthier this week, or saying no to something you are doing out of guilt, treat yourself, put yourself first instead of spreading yourself so thinly. Be kind to your body, your thoughts, and your emotions.
All of the above collectively have really helped me. I would love to hear what helps you with mind chatter or feeling abit meh - comment or email me. I still don’t really know the root cause but it doesn’t matter because to simply just be has already made me feel more like me!