Why Being Present Matters

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A few months ago as I was walking up the stairs of my apartment building on my way home from work, it occured to me how much I was trying to rush my life, and how hard I was being on myself in the process. I had been mentally yearning for the days of my 30’s: when my career will be thriving and aligned. When I’ll be traveling regularly, and enjoying a bit more luxury in my life. Not luxury of stuff, just of experience. When I'll have someone that I deeply care about next to me to share those experiences with. In my head, I realized, I had been treating myself as if nothing mattered until I reached that point.

I want to acknowledge that on some level those visions were positive. That was the first time I had had a clear vision of who I wanted to be in who knows how long, and I felt like I had been chasing it for months. I could see her- that future Krystal. I swelled and overflowed with gratitude when I looked at her: confident, healthy, loving, truly compassionate. After all, we must know where we are going if we are to arrive, right?

The problem was that I had partly been living my present as if it didn’t really matter, because it wasn't that future that I'd been imagining. I was effectively trying to push the fast forward button, instead of realizing that these days, by nature, have to precede that beautiful future. In order to get there, to be that Krystal- I have to be here now, living these moments.

We are the same, future Krystal and I. But I have to honor my life as it is now in order to get to her. It doesn’t have to be in my 30’s, and in fact I highly doubt it will be even remotely that far away. But I realized that if I make a habit out of trying to fast-forward my days, then I’m going to miss all of the good stuff in between. And when I get to the great stuff, I won’t know how to slow down and enjoy it. That, my friends, is why people achieve their goals and still don't feel fulfilled. And I don't want that for myself or for anyone else.

So I’m here. So immensely grateful for this day, for the days that led me here, and for the days that will lead me there. They all matter. 

Are you telling yourself a story about the future that is causing you to not inhabit your present? What can you do to better show up in your life in this moment?