Softening into the present
Monday, May 07, 2012
I found that the scale was up two pounds today. That is no surprise.
One choice I could make about that is to feel even more rotten about myself and to vow to do better in the future.
It sounds so logical.
And yet, it isn’t. Here’s why I think that vow about the future might not be the right choice.
This morning, I dropped in on a blog by “Be the change” and read the information she had posted about herself. She’d posted several quotes that she found inspirational. I noticed that many of them had to do *not* with the future but with what is happening now:
• "Your daily actions and words impact more people than you realize." ~ SparkGuy Chris
• Feeling sorry for yourself, and your present condition, is not only a waste of energy but the worst habit you could possibly have." ~ Dale Carnegie
• This moment is your life." ~ Omar Khayyam
This diverse set of people – a weight loss guy, a 20th century motivational speaker, and a 12th century Persian poet and polymath – are all pointing to something important. It’s not about where we’re going, but where we are right now.
And then I remembered that yesterday while I was waiting for a friend, I peeked at a newsletter I subscribe to (and usually don’t read) about brain neuroscience and being happy. And – guess what? It was on the same topic.
Neuroscientist and Buddhist Rick Hanson wrote: “I don't mean to be heady, merely intellectual, about this. Softening into the present, dropping regrets about the past and worries about the future, coming home to the body in this moment - this is the basis of true happiness. We rest in the present, afloat in its eternally renewing gifts.”
So: I tried it this morning.
I tried just being present in my body…and changing my thoughts from – I’m so fat! – to – I look great! And voila – I started to feel better already.
I’m grateful to Be the Change and Rick Hanson for bringing this wisdom to me!
P.S. The nephew of “Be the change” needs prayers, so if you’re the sort who prayers, I’m sure she’d appreciate it.