By nature, I’m a planner, list maker, and goal maker, so it’s not uncommon for me to be working on or thinking about more than one thing at a time. With my brain going in different directions, I often miss living in the present, let alone enjoying it. I’ve been working on improving this, and I’ve found that I’m a lot less stressed and much happier when I do. But it’s easy to slip back into multi-tasking mode. So how do you live in the moment when there are so many things demanding your time and attention? Here are two tips you can try today to not just live in the moment but enjoy it too.
1. Try doing just one thing at a time. Enjoying the moment means focusing on it, and that’s difficult to do when you’re doing more than one thing at a time. Try leaving the multitasking madness behind just for an afternoon or evening. Let go of the need to do a few things at once, and focus on each task individually. Relax and relish the moment simply by focusing on it. You’ll find yourself enjoying even the most mundane tasks more, and you’ll find that attention makes the end results all the better for your efforts. As Todd Henry says, “The greatest efforts in life are done with singular attention.”
2. Shut out thoughts about the future temporarily. Even if your body is only doing one task at a time, that doesn’t mean your mind is following suit. It’s pretty normal for our thoughts to wander. But to truly enjoy the now, your mind needs to be there as much as your body. How do you keep that mind on the now? According to Richard Moss, when we recognize we’re not in the present, concentrating on what we see, hear and experience in that precise moment will bring us back. This is also the way we can tame our egos and not let them take us out of the present into Worry Land. Once our brains are experiencing the moment, it’s much easier to enjoy it. Try it once or twice today when you catch your mind wandering or concentrating on worries. See if it helps you enjoy the moment more.