Presence is the state or fact of existing, occurring, or being present. Being present feels really good, it’s you enjoying everything life has to offer in this moment.
For many people the resistance to being in the present moment is a subtle way to avoid uncomfortable feelings. If you allow yourself to be in the present moment, you have to accept the feelings that are coming up and the thoughts that created them. Although this is one of the most powerful and freeing things you can do, many of us have learned to push away, resist, drown out, or attempt to ignore these feelings. These emotions carry messages for you to hear. They are there to help you, to help you understand that what you’re thinking is not true for you. So in an attempt to avoid feeling negative emotion people often try to avoid now. But then they never get to the root of their feelings, which will keep recurring and keep consistent happiness feeling further and further out of reach.
Just as a hurting child will clamor for attention until heard, our feelings need attention. When welcomed and listened to in a gentle, caring way, they tend to pass and provide the feedback we need to hear. We are then freed to be in a new moment, now freed of the subtle pull of unattended and troubling emotions.
Being present ultimately equals happiness. The best moments in your life are always experienced when you are fully present, they feel good, you’re happy, excited, having fun, at peace, in love, connected, creating, appreciating, giving, helping, confident, and the list goes on.
Associating PAIN with Happiness
If we know being present means being happy, why would we avoid letting ourselves be present and doing the things we know result in happiness? Because you associate pain with living in the now, with feeling good, with being happy, with putting ourselves fully out there, with getting what you want. If you believe feeling good or being present will ultimately result in pain, it seems logical to avoid it. We try to prevent the negative emotion, try to be as prepared as possible for any unforeseen or life-altering circumstance, avoid people that could potentially make us feel bad, plan for everything, avoid situations that could potentially end in pain or that remind us of when we experienced pain, we keep our happiness in check so when the shoe ultimately drops it doesn’t hurt as bad…all the while missing out on all that life has to offer right now.
You can’t possibly know everything that is going to happen. You can’t control outcomes, people or life. You can’t stop yourself from wanting the things you want, and you can’t make yourself want a life that you don’t. You can try, but it won’t ever feel fulfilling. What you do have control of is the stories you tell, what you allow yourself to experience, the meaning you give circumstances and events, how you feel, and how you react. People are unpredictable, life is unpredictable, and thankfully this is the case. Can you imagine a life where you always knew exactly what was going to happen? Where you controlled everything? Isn’t it better to have a balance of certainty and uncertainty?
The Power of Presence
When you can stand in a state of presence you can handle anything life throws at you. You can find ways to have everything you have ever wanted, even if the path is a little different than you originally planned. Sometimes the things that caused the most pain are the greatest gifts, and sometimes the thing that never happened is the best thing that ever happened.
When you trust that you’re in the right place, it’s the right time, and you can have everything you want, you can begin listening to the messages YOU are giving yourself. You can hear what your emotions want you to know, you can trust that the past has nothing to do with the now or the future, you can see that no matter what has happened you have always figured it out, you can stop trying to plan everything and just start living. Goals are important, but start living them now. You can set aside time each day to visualize and work on your goals, but you still require presence to work on them.
Start feeling the essence of having what you want now, and when the evidence comes that it’s happening, embrace it, enjoy it, and try not to wait for the shoe to drop or make it drop.