What It Means To Live In The Moment

June 15, 2017


Yesterday, I was talking to a friend of mine at work while we walked across campus and I realized that I was telling her about how I was already worried about things happening over a month from now. She's the kind of person who just goes with the flow and doesn't worry about the future, where I'm the type who can't stop running through scenarios and worrying about how difficult things will be in the future.

Sometimes, I think too much.

Okay, oftentimes I think too much! Does anyone else do this? I did some googling and read a couple articles about how introverts have a tendency to be in their heads and that's definitely me!

When I was in Keystone on a 3-day field trip with the 7th grade, I had absolutely nothing to think about or worry about except what was happening right then. I didn't have time to be on my phone, I didn't have to be anywhere or get any work done. All I had to do was chat with the teachers, keep the kids in line, and enjoy being up in the mountains.

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It was lovely.

It was such a peaceful three days that I came back feeling on top of the world.  I wanted to continue that feeling and keep trying to live in the moment, but then life happened. I had work to get done, I had expectations to meet and I started getting back in my head again until I realized what I was doing yesterday.

Yes, it's hard for me not to think too much or worry about the future, but I'm making it a goal to focus on living in the present moment this summer. Habits are hard to form, but it is possible! Every time I catch myself unnecessarily worrying about the future, I'm going to take a deep breath and focus on what I'm doing now.

So do not worry, saying, ‘What shall we eat?’ or ‘What shall we drink?’ or ‘What shall we wear?’ For the pagans run after all these things, and your heavenly Father knows that you need them. But seek first his kingdom and his righteousness, and all these things will be given to you as well. Therefore do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will worry about itself. Each day has enough trouble of its own.

Matthew 6:31-34

Sure, it's important to plan ahead, but worrying is simply living through the worst-case scenario in your mind and bringing up negative feelings. If whatever you're worried about goes well, then you've wasted time that could have been positive. If whatever you're worried about does go poorly, then you've made yourself live it twice.

I'm not going to change overnight, but I am going to try to adjust my thinking. If you worry like I do, let's do this together! Let's focus on what's happening right now - not this afternoon, not tomorrow, not a month or a year from now. Focus on the good things, the things that make you grateful and the things that bring you fun and peace. Take in the sounds, smells, touch and feelings of that moment. Being able to focus on what you can do right now or enjoying the moment is incredibly peaceful and calming. Yes, we will get in our heads again, but it's worth the effort.