At this moment, I am sitting on my porch swing, swinging, and hearing my fingers clack away on my computer. At the same time, I am aware of the birds singing and chirping, my mom doing yard work (I love when she visits), and smelling the cool, crisp air hinting fall may actually have arrived. All of this is happening right here, right now, in front and around me. I am aware of my reality. I am living the present moment.
Then I get tripped up. Where do I go? To a place, I am going to call "made-up Scenerioville". This place is where the past or future pops up into my head. The place where past “didn't dos” or “forgot todos” creep in to remind me I am not doing enough. The place where my future projections fall short of my liking. This place is where all the present-moment-sucking scenarios live.
I am guessing the majority of the people who read this short blog post can relate to dwelling in Scenerioville. I understand the paralyzing effects of this headspace all too well which is why I am consistently working on being aware of it happening. It is not a problem to visit this place, but dwelling there creates unnecessary suffering. So what is my solution to make sure I only visit? There is one way that I have found to be the most effective to get me out of this headspace. It is simple, and one I learned through my yoga therapy training. It is a question.
When you find yourself lost in the past or in the projections of your future, and you are lingering too long, ask yourself "What's happening now?” Go around and point out everything you are noticing in this moment. Be literal.
Take time today to do a "What's happening now?" check-in. It will take you between one to three minutes.