On January 29, I wrote a blog post about living in the present. At the end of the post, I said that I was going to try to do a mantra: “It’s today. My favorite day,” every day for a month. Well, I did not do very well at remembering my mantra, so I have thought of something else. I’ve set it up as an “event” on my iPhone. Every day my iPhone will show me this mantra, so I will say it to myself at least once a day, and more if I can help it. We’ll see how it goes. I will report the results on April 1.
Meanwhile, I have seen some more quotes and another great illustration about living in the present moment.
Eckhart Tolle wrote, “The past has no power over the present moment.” You may disagree, saying that you still feel sad or upset or embarrassed about something that happened in the past. The problem is this: normally, original emotional responses only last a few minutes. They exist to help you process the experience you just had or are having. But then, the original response is over, and in order to continue feeling sad, embarrassed, upset, or regretful, we have to choose to prolong the emotional response. Most of the time we end up making this choice unconsciously, for some reason. We can, however, make a conscious choice to re-program our subconscious so that we don’t continue to prolong the negative emotion anymore. In other words, the past has no power over the present, as long as you don’t allow it. But beware, because we tend to “allow” many things subconsciously, even though we would be mortified to admit it consciously.
What about the future? Notice that all the negative feelings are illustrated as one large rock, rather than a pile of smaller ones. This is because unease, anxiety, tension, stress, and worry are all forms of one thing: fear. Fear of the unknown. Fear of loss of control. Fear of death. If you think about all the things you have been worried about in your life and recall how the event actually played out, you have to admit that in the vast majority of cases, the actual event wasn’t nearly as bad as you had feared. Besides, no matter how bad it was… you got through it, didn’t you?
See you again on April 1, and I’ll tell you whether the mantra has had any noticeable impact. 🙂