Living in now or living the very moment or living like there’s no tomorrow, whatever you call it as.
I have started practising “living in now” since 2010 (as I had no option left ;-)).
When I thought of writing this article, I immediately thought of a person who’s a Doctor and heads a renowned hospital in Mumbai City as a CEO. He and I had met many a times. He’s in his mid-60s, still loves his career, continuing to work full-time.
Whenever I have met him, it occurred to me that unlike everyone else I know (myself NOT included), he would be receiving very less calls or text messages during our time together. I used to feel very nice to be with someone who was totally present—and what a nice thing for him, to be living fully in the present moment.
I used to get impressed with his behaviour, he is a master in ‘switching on’ and ‘switching off” the ‘thoughts button’ whenever required.
I started to practice and train my mind and thoughts like him…
I replaced my smartphone with a one without e-mail or any other facilities on it. I have deliberately chosen a one like that. I use it only to make and receive calls. If I have to check even an email, I have to be at the PC. I don’t want the ease of access to things like e-mail suck me in.
Another thing that anyone who would have had a meal with me would have noticed: I was an incredibly fast eater—likely the fastest eater one would have ever met. I used to chew for a very short time. I like (even today) to eat very hot things in ‘as it is’ condition and very cold things in the cold condition. So I had no option but to eat it fast to keep their originality intact. There was no ‘Mindful eating’, I would say.
I love to tell everyone about great meals I had had & regularly recommending on my newest restaurant “discovery.” It used to seem funny to others that I am so passionate about so many restaurants until it occurred to them that I had an advantage over most of them—I was totally present when I tried out those new restaurants, and everything is better when you live in the present moment.
I have started practising eating slowly. To enjoy each and every bite!!! People say it’s good for your digestion and it helps you to not overeat. One or two servings are more than enough for me now a days. And that’s the way I am eating at all times—at home, at restaurants, alone, with others, during meals, and during dessert.
It’s health benefits are bonus.
I used to spend a lot of time thinking about past or thinking (and often worrying) about the future. I have absolutely stopped doing this. I just can’t believe that I have achieved this.
I had sort of addicted to the instant access available to me that I used to think will make me more productive, but mostly served to make me into 24/7 multitasking—not a happy, nice, or healthy place to be.
So, how I am getting closer to become more and more present?
The same way we learn to make any other change in our life: Create a goal, break it down into smaller pieces, and work on it one small change at a time.
I am adopting following changes –
- Eating more slowly
- Not reading the newspaper (or anything else) while eating
- Turning off the phone when at movies or to a restaurant
- Not to attend a call or even look at text messages while talking with someone else in person
- Breathing deeply when feeling stressed (if at all) about something
Sometimes I feel that “life is short”, but it’s also true that “life is long,” meaning that I have time, and that I don’t have to try to make big changes all at once—which can leave me so overwhelmed that I make none.
If I slow down to make changes, focusing on one new habit at a time, I’ll accomplish much more. Even if I slow down further (e.g., one new habit every month), I can experience many positive changes!!!
At the same time, this slow and steady approach to change will make me more present about accomplishing my goals.25