A lot of us neglect to enjoy and appreciate the present because we are either too busy working and preparing for the future, or we can’t let go and move on from our past. As such, we live our present with anxiety and stress or worry and regret. We fail to do our best in living the most of the present.
When we live regretting the past and worrying about the future, we tend to become unhappy and ungrateful of our present-day. It gives us reason to focus on what we don’t have instead of being grateful of what we do have.
When we don’t know how to live in the present, we fail to give our best in what we do which drowns us to complaining on the things that we don’t like instead of rejoicing on what we like.
The worse thing that happens when we don’t know how to enjoy the present is that we develop a negative attitude. We become irritable, complainer, unpleasant and stressed. Throughout the day, what we focus to see, think and say are all negative things. As such, people find it difficult and depressing to deal with us. Our negative attitude shows in our aura, body and facial expression. It becomes part of our habit and then eventually, becomes part of who we are.
‘Today is life – the only life you are sure of. Make the most of today.” by Dale Carnegie
Today, the present, is the only sure day we have, so why live it with regret, worry, negative thinking and ungratefulness?
The Importance of Focusing on the Present
In the past, I was one of those who can’t let go and regretful of the past while I worry and get anxious about the future. I tend to live the present with “what ifs”, “I wish I did this and that” or “it should be like this and that”. Then I get frustrated and depressed when my present life was far from what I wish or expect it to be.
My worry and anxious attitude affected not only how I feel but as well as how I decide and act on things. I rush and exhaust myself with so many activities and work in a day. The last thing I do is slow down and take a break. I even deprive myself from complete sleep and healthy habits. Until one day, I got sick, physically and emotionally, that I needed to take a break.
During my break, I started reading self-help and personal development books. I knew something wasn’t good and right with my negative thinking that’s why I wanted to resolve it. I wanted to change and improve myself. Fortunately, with my desire and persistence to change I was able to overcome the negative thinking and became more optimistic. It didn’t happen overnight, it took months of learning and application before it finally changed my outlook.
The valuable lesson I’ve learned on such experience is the importance of living in the present.
When we stop thinking too much about our past or future, and start to think of the present, our thoughts shifts from “I wish or I should” to “I will or I am”. That simple change in words or thoughts will change us from being a victim of circumstance into becoming a victor. We realize that we have a choice to enjoy and make the most of the present. And we chose not to waste it with negative thinking, worrying or regretting. Living in the present reminds us that today is what we have; we can either waste it or live it to the fullest.
Allow me to repeat and highlight that sentence again:
“Living in the present reminds us that today is what we have; we can either waste it or live it to the fullest.”
When we learn to live in the present we develop gratitude and enthusiasm in our life, as compared to feeling worried, stressed or anxious brought by past experiences and future expectations. We will start to enjoy what we do and be happy with what we have. And as we continue living with gratitude, we are able to bring more positive things in our life.
Remember that happiness is a state of mind, as well as misery. By living in the present, remind yourself to focus your thoughts on what is good and what you have while you still can.
“To get up each morning with the resolve to be happy… is to set our own conditions to the events of each day. To do this is to condition circumstances instead of being conditioned by them.” by Ralph Waldo Trine