In today's society, people in the younger generations, Millennials and Gen Z’s, are constantly working and planning their future. They are determined and have great work ethics. They are persistent in becoming successful and making a change in the world. It's not uncommon to have two jobs out of want instead of necessity these days. We are living in a society that excepts alternative lifestyles more than ever. Couples are getting married later in life now and focusing solely on their career throughout most of their twenties. More and more people are attending four-year universities now. Young people tend to focus more on their career instead of thinking of when they want to or even if they want to have a family.
This determination is set by constantly having a goal they have to reach. Now, I stress it is important to have goal’s because within goal’s there is success, but when does the planning stop? When do you stop dwelling on the future? What happens when you reach your goal? How are you affected on a daily basis? When can you finally stop moving? When will you start living in the moment? If you asked yourself any of these questions, then you need to start living by this simple quote, “Live in the moment.”
If you are always wondering what's next all the time, then my advice to you and to everyone is to just stop and breathe. Take it all in. Take in your surroundings. Develop on the inside and focus less on the outside. Who cares who is watching you? Who cares who judges you? Acknowledge the environment that you are in and fall in love with it. It sounds cheesy, but it’s an important thing to do. As humans, as people, we take for granted our daily lives. How many people stare out the window on their daily commute to work? Do they actually look out the window of their bus and think about how the leaves are starting the change from green to yellow and orange or do they stare at their phones replying to missed emails and taking work calls? I feel as though society has been continuously growing and improving and that there is so much going on that we do not take the time to notice it. It is not until you stop thinking about work, chores or whatever is bringing you stress that you have time to think about all the beautiful things around you.
Nature is beautiful and I have had such an appreciation for the outdoors lately. People do not look up at the sky enough and notice all the different colors it can be. Sunsets are the most beautiful thing because the sky repaints a new picture every night. There are so many colors and patterns that we will never see the same sunset twice. Things like this, that are so impossibly true, are things that I believe people do not notice today because of many things. Technology is a main cause of this because it is also so new and unexplainably addicting. You can do so many things with technology that you forget about things like how fascinating the outdoors can be. I do believe that is it important to get outside every day because the outdoors offers something that nothing else can. An escape. You can go anywhere if you are outside. You feel different, too. Staying indoors too much is unhealthy which is why when you find you have lost your focus; I urge you to acknowledge where you are physically and mentally. Where you are in life?
Ponder and actually think about why you are where you are. Where are you in your life at this moment? Are you living or are you just planning what your next move will be? Asking yourself if you are living may seem silly, but it is an important question to address. When I say living, I don’t mean check your pulse. What I mean is are you enjoying what you are doing. Do you enjoy where you are at in life? Now, it is okay to not enjoy your life somedays, especially the bad days. It becomes a problem when it is everyday. If you feel that you are constantly working, stressed or whatever it may be, then you are not living in the moment. If you have no time to yourself, and I mean letting yourself relax alone and not work, then you are not living. You are simply overworking yourself, and for what? Ask yourself is your constant stress is worth your goal? You know, it is okay to have a goal, but also to have a social life and alone time.
You do not always have to be 100% constantly doing things for your future. This is where living in the moment gets lost for me. I find that I am in this work driven society, so I am constantly pushing myself to do the most. I feel as though I am rushing my life by through work to get to success, somedays not enjoying what I am supposed to love. It is easy to lose track of where you are going sometimes. It is hard for some people to stop what they are doing and take a break, but it is essential for you to enjoy life. And for me, it is essential for you to enjoy life to really live. It is okay to stumble as long as you get back up. Getting lost in your mind is common, but it is important to sit down and find yourself too.
There was a period of time where I lost track of where I was going, and I began to lose myself. My future plans had fallen through and because I did not know my next step I was lost. What helped me live in the moment was when I began to think about all the things that I could control. I stopped thinking about what was next and began to think about what I was going through at that moment. I needed to focus on something that I could keep track of, so that I could find more joy in my everyday lifestyle. I have always had an interest in yoga, but never devoted a lot of time to it until I found myself with all this time and no plan. I began taking online yoga classes with my school which helped me really focus on myself physically and mentally. When my daily routine did not consist of only work, then I found my days more enjoyable. I even would do yoga outside some days which made me appreciate my surroundings while also improving myself. Beginning these yoga classes developed to my liking towards meditation. I have never tried meditation in my life, and I was not sure how I would feel about it, but instead of worrying about if it was for me or not, I just went for it. And you know what, I loved it.
I take meditation classes online through my school and it is a great way to really focus on you and only you. It allows you to really delve into how you are feeling, goals you want to achieve and most importantly, how to be in the moment. When you are meditating you usually are in a private space alone, giving yourself this personal moment to work on you. The best part about meditating is that a lot of it focuses on things you have been through and where you are now. Depending on what type of meditation you do, whether it’s with an instructor or if you just give yourself a prompt, you are able to focus on the moment that you are living in. Even if you do not know where to begin when it comes to mediation, just close your eyes and think about a word or something that resonates with you and basically go from there. It is crazy how deep your mind can think if you just give it some time and are at ease. Adding these two activities to my weekly schedule made me feel so much more appreciative of my life and where I was at. It is hard sometimes not to compare yourself to the success of others, but I think that the happiness of your lifestyle is just as important.
Now meditation is not for everyone, I get it. I have noticed that having some type of activity, could be active or mental, helps improve your daily lifestyle. Every person has a specific thing that is their thing even if they have not found it yet. Many people have several interests, and that is great too. Incorporating an activity that you love into your everyday lifestyle will help you live more in the moment. I am not saying to quit your day job, but also do not let your job consume your whole day. You are not living in the moment if you are just dreading the day ahead of you. There is always time for radical self-care, even if you just set aside 10 minutes of your time, it can improve your whole attitude.
Having a plan is an essential step to pursue your goals and aspirations, but make sure you are enjoying what you are doing to get to your goal. It is easier said than done but try to find joy in every little thing. If you work a 12-hour shift and you are absolutely dreading it, try to think about the positives around you. Bring a fun break food snack or splurge on the closest fast food place. Have conversations with your coworkers. Ask others how they are doing. Greet strangers. Smile at everyone you encounter.
Working is a part of life and a lot of people do not like their jobs. It’s unfortunate, but it is true. I believe this is because of having the wrong mindset. If you go into something with a positive attitude, then your day can turn out great. On these more work heavy days, it is okay to look forward to events in the future that excite you, even if it is just having a day off work to lay in your bed all day. I think it is important to look forward to the future to a certain extent. I do not want people to wish their days away. It is important to enjoy every day as it goes to truly live in the moment. You don’t want to look back at your twenties thinking about how you never went out for a drink because you were too overwhelmed in your work.
In order to live in the moment, you cannot dwell on the past or the future. You can only rely on the present, so I encourage that you enjoy the present. I hope you live to have more days that are enjoyable than less days. Living in the moment can be the easiest thing to do, yet the hardest. Just try and enjoy the little things in life. Think about all the things you have in life. Think less about what the future holds because you can’t control it. All you can do is be the best version of yourself that you can be. And that t is what will lead you to a successful career.
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