>Remaining Present on Easter

>It’s two days past Easter and, for those of us living in South Jersey, the weather is amazing!  It’s 88 degrees outside! We haven’t felt temps like this since early fall last year.  With the weather being so nice, you might be wondering, why the heck am I not outside enjoying the weather, but I really am enjoying the day.

I’m sitting in my kitchen nook, doing what I do best:  multi-tasking!!  Lol!  The sliding glass door is open; all of the windows are open; and the ceiling fan is circulating an abundance of fresh air throughout the house.  I’m babysitting for a friend.  My son and two other kids ages 7 & 9 just came in from outside and are drained from playing in the heat.  Gee, I never thought that I could even think about mouthing the word “heat” when just a month ago, we were buried in snow. Anyway, all three kids are quietly lying on the sofa watching “Finding Nemo” for the umpteenth time!  And me…. Walla!   I’m trying to get my writing thing on…

Recently, a colleague gave me a copy of Russell Simmons, “Do You!” It’s a great read, a little philosophical, but yet, incredibly thought provoking. Quite a few passages have really struck me, one such passage reads:

         “The most powerful step in realizing your potential is simply to be present in the
         world.  That might seem so obvious that it barely bears repeating, but operating
         outside of the present is actually what separates all of us from the happiness we
         desire.”  “Too often we spend our lives drifting between the past and the future,
         instead of rooting ourselves in the moment.  And living like that, you become
         your worst enemy.  You wait for things to happen instead of making them
         happen.  You imagine what happiness is like instead of appreciating the
         happiness that is already present in your life…  You must embrace the present. 
         Never forget that…”
These are some very powerful words that moved me to reflect on my own life.  I should say further reflect, because not a day goes by where I’m not thinking about how I could have done something better or handled a situation differently, or something along those lines.  Anyway, more specifically I started thinking my personal life.  I am definitely happy, but recall moments when I’ve had thoughts such as, “I will be glad when my son is old enough to bath without supervision.” “I can’t wait until the summer arrives,” or some other thought that doesn’t involve the present and involves me “drifting in the future.”

I’ve taken Russell’s (in my mind, we’re friends now) words to heart and, particularly Easter Sunday tried to apply his principal.

As usual, we hosted another family dinner at our home.  Because of typical family issues that have occurred over the past two years, for once, I really didn’t want to host dinner.  But decided to host dinner anyway and more so for my elderly aunts.  They’re getting too old to cook the big dinners; it’s their time to sit back and enjoy.  There’s a long history, but the short is, they’ve been a part of my life forever–  the good—the bad— and the—you know the rest.  Including my mom, there were nine sisters; seven are still living; five still live in the area.  As with many families, there are serious generational differences and, as you might imagine, sometimes the differences clash. 

Drifting between the past and the future revealed some unsettling emotions and those emotions almost tripped me into bagging Easter dinner.  Reflecting on my friend Russell’s words inspired me to host dinner and “embrace the present.”   He was right!  Easter dinner turned out to be wonderful!  The 20 something’s bridged nicely with the 40 something’s who bridged nicely with the 65 & older group.   I focused on the present and genuinely enjoyed my day. 

or those of you who’ve already unknowingly mastered Russell’s concept, great! I’d love for you to share more of your wisdom with me and with others, please post your thoughts.  If the idea is new to you, try it. This concept can apply to your career, a project, or anything else that you’ve been thinking about doing. Don’t wait for the perfect opportunity to “do you,” start acting now.  Think forward, but remain present!

5 thoughts on “>Remaining Present on Easter

  1. >This is Great Advice.. Okay So I need to post myself a sticky note because I have this problem. Always re-evaluating past decisions and beating myself up over issues that may happen now but are a result of a decision I may have made in the past and then looking to the future to wonder how things will turn out but not enjoying the present moment.. Love the Reminder!! I need to make some things happen!

  2. >Natalia, I do the same thing with the post it notes. I have taped labels all around my computer that read, "think forward." For me, being "present" will take practice and effort. I also have positive & inspirational quotes posted all around my office. They help me to stay focused on more challenging days. Stay focused, I'm sure that you're going to make incredible accomplishments!!

  3. >Past and future are unfortunately the only dimensions of thought process for many. Dwelling on the past can be a source of pain if your past has been difficult or if you regret not doing or doing or wish you had done something differently. Dwelling on the future can bring disappointment as often, we plan events that we find out later either never materialize or didn't turn out the way we planned. The present is ALL we have. When we finally realize this, the moments we live become more meaningful, we perceive things that otherwise would go unnoticed, we engage all of our senses, we become PRESENT. I enjoyed reading your entry. If you wish to read yet another book on being present, with a funny twist, read David Romanelli's "Livin' the moment". Enjoy the NOW, Tanya.

  4. >I equate that to being "Thankful" for who you are, what you are, and what you have right now. I was just talking with friend today saying that as soon as you get what you want or think you want, you start stressing about the next thing that you don't have. I guess its hard to balance the reflecting that you must do on the past and the dreaming that you need to do for the future with the appreciation that you must have for the present.

  5. >MJW & Bea- It can be difficult balancing ambition, hopes, and dreams, while reflecting on the past but if you are conscientious of your thoughts, you can and will appreciate the blessings that we currently enjoy.

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