The statement ‘learn to live in the present moment’ ranks right up there as a catch-all phrase that I would be hard pressed to argue with, though I do admit it irks me when it is used as the definitive answer to erase angst and fear.
Rather than shutting down our fears and apprehensions with overused cliches, let’s look deeper into how we can learn to live in the present.
It would seem that all we have to do is make new choices and decisions and continue on down our life path. Simple. Or maybe not.
Let’s imagine that every strong decision you have ever made is still alive and well somewhere in your consciousness. So, in third grade, as an example, you experienced that adults didn’t listen to you, therefore you decided to keep your important thoughts and feelings to yourself. In 7th grade, your teacher was confusing and when you told her you didn’t understand, she embarrassed you in front of the class. As a result, you decided from then on to make believe you understand even if you don’t. In high school, your first love betrayed you. You decided that it wasn’t a good idea to let yourself care deeply.
Life provides impactful experiences and we continue making decisions that will hopefully protect us from upset.
Let’s imagine further that each time one of these decisions is made, a soldier is birthed with one direct order to carry out. Keep the new decision alive and well.
Now, fast forward to 2019. You decide you want to enhance your ability to relate to the significant people in your life. You want to express yourself meaningfully. You want to really hear and understand who that other person is and what is important to them. The ‘express yourself’ soldier is birthed. The ‘listen and understand others’ soldier packs his bags and marches out into your world.
Just a bit down the road these two new soldiers meet up with a couple of old-timers. The ‘keep your important thoughts and feelings to yourself’ soldier, who is highly decorated for exceptional performance in the line of duty and the ‘even if confused, make believe you understand’ soldier who was promoted to officer status, are both standing at attention in the middle of the road.
The two new soldiers are fired up and ready to fight. The two seasoned soldiers are skilled in warfare and have been on active duty for a long time. The battle begins.
Meanwhile, you are feeling emotionally exhausted and unable to move forward. One minute you are expressing your thoughts and feelings. The next moment you are making believe you understand when you really don’t. The old decision ‘don’t care deeply’ joins the fray and suddenly you want to withdraw and hide from everyone.
Instead of giving up, maybe it is time to call back the troops. When past decisions collide with your present intentions; doubt, fear and confusion begin to set in.
When internal battles rage, remember this story. Set out to discover and uncover old beliefs that no longer serve you. Take your energy and power back by recognizing that when you are stopped and confused, it may be due to operating at crossed purposes. Two beliefs fighting against each other.
Call a cease-fire. Instead of being afraid of your energy and labeling yourself confused and depressed, realize how well your soldiers have fought for your past beliefs and call them home. Thank them for their commitment and service to past decisions and give them an honorable discharge. Give them and yourself some ‘rest and relaxation.’
Inner peace can only be restored through self-patience. Take some quiet time to gain clarity on your present intentions and whether they line up with your deepest needs, values and goals of today. Decide to treat yourself and your ever-evolving life process with kindness.
Send your soldiers on a mission of peace—peace of mind.
Susan is a local author of “Beyond Intellect: Journey Into the Wisdom of Your Intuitive Mind.” Learn more at: www.susanvelasquez.com.