“The mind is like water. When it’s turbulent, it’s difficult to see. When it’s calm, everything becomes clear.” – Prasad Mahes
Have you ever found yourself in a situation where you disconnect from what’s going on and get lost in the thoughts swirling through your head? Maybe you experienced a trigger that set off a past memory? We call this the monkey mind. It’s when your mind runs off on a tangent and disconnects from what’s going on around you, like a train leaving the station running full steam ahead. Monkey mind steals your joy of experiencing the present moment.
These experiences are more common than you think. Did you know that we have between 50,000-70,000 thoughts per day? Yikes! No wonder that can leave you feeling stressed out.
So how do you shift from having your mind FULL to being more mindful?
Being more present benefits us in a number of ways.
- It allows us to be a better listener. Being present emotionally and mentally improves our relationships. We can empathize better and truly understand where they are coming from.
- It allows us to disconnect from the negative thought patterns of our past and interject with a more positive affirming belief.
- It improves our memory, ability to concentrate, and cognitive abilities.
- It reduces stress and helps us plug in to what’s happening in the moment.
- It improves sleep. There’s nothing worse than going through your mental to do list or rehashing the day to keep you up at night. Let go and enjoy better sleep.
- It improves creativity and abilities. Instead of embracing the negative self-talk, you believe that more is possible for you and can start achieving it. Possibilities invite solutions to become more present and available.
So How Can You Be More Present?
Change your Thoughts. When you find yourself daydreaming about something else, say to yourself “Be present now!”. Then look around you. Ground yourself in the moment. It helps you magically shift gears.
Affirmations. When you find yourself listening to negative self-talk say a positive affirmation. If you say it often enough you will create a stronger neural pathway in your brain that can override the former limiting belief. Once you recognize that none of the limiting beliefs are true, you can then change the negative messages you send yourself to positive affirmations.
Write it Out. When thoughts are circling in your head, one way to stop it is by putting your thoughts on paper. Journaling helps you see what’s going on and get perspective. It shifts you from obsessing to a quieter observer mode of your thoughts. Writing can bring the gross and chaotic fires of a mind drowning in consumption, into a refined and gentle fire that nourishes, nurtures and sustains.
Observe your Thoughts. Think of yourself as a quiet watcher of your thoughts. Allow the thoughts to move past you as if they were like clouds in the sky. They don’t have to become you. You can quietly allow them to be. Be the stillness behind the mental noise. Your ego judges you and is biased by the thoughts of others, whereas your true self has unlimited possibility and power. Dr. Joe Dispenza talks about how many of us have forgotten and even lost our ability to observe. Instead, we have become trapped in a perpetual cycle of reactions and accelerated thinking rather than quiet observation.
Benefits of Being More Present
When you are more present within yourself it affects every facet of your life. Your relationships will have deeper connections. You’ll be able to think more clearly. You’ll have more bandwidth for creative thought. You’ll feel happier as you let go of the stories of the past. You will also notice that your relationship with time will shift from scarcity to abundance. Time slows down when we are able to be more present with the things that are filling our time.
As you get more present you’ll notice the multitude of blessings all around you. Know that life doesn’t happen to you, it happens for you. All things that happen to you provide joy or learning. Learning to allow yourself to be an observer of your experiences rather than immersed in them gives you objectivity to see those life lessons.
Here’s to hoping you see the joy and beauty in everyday life. Blessings.