The following exercise program has been designed to get the mind firmly in the present, not yesterday or tomorrow but right here, right now.
It's a particularly great exercise to become familiar with because it helps during times when you need to totally concentrate on an important task.
There have been many times in the past when I've been overwhelmed by the many different tasks on my 'to do list'. Learning to become present has helped me to focus totally on one thing at a time and makes me far more effective in my work output.
You can try one, more than one, or all of the following exercises to access the present moment and as you do them, retain your focus for at least three minutes. The longer you stay focused the longer you'll be in the present moment.
If you start thinking about dinner; what's on television; the shopping etc, then you're no longer in the present but the future or possibly the past. If and when this happens refocus on your breathing to again be aware of the present moment.
Sit and be still, as in do nothing except become aware of the rise and fall of your chest as you breathe in and out, listening to the sound of your breath.
To become fully present, right here right now, focus on what is happening inside your body. Do you have hunger pains? Are you cold/hot? Move your tongue around inside your mouth and feel your teeth.
Hear the sounds of people, traffic, music and anything else that is around you at this present moment.
Become aware of the colours around you, the colours of your clothing, the furniture, the seat you're in, the colours surrounding the windows and doors within your line of sight.
Start to feel the texture of the materials you come in contact with. Right now feel the texture of the clothing you're wearing, is it soft, rough, cool, warm, fluffy? Do you notice the weave of the shirt, trousers or skirt you're wearing?
Put your hands together and start massaging your palms. Do you notice the lines in your palms, does your skin feel dry, smooth or rough. Now massage the tops of your hands. Do you notice any differences?
Concentrate only on what you are doing right now. Nothing else exists while you are concentrating on the task at hand. When you do this you are in the present moment, tomorrow and yesterday no longer exist there is only you and this moment.
When you have conversations with others, be there with them. Listen attentively; match their tone, speed, volume and pitch and also their breathing rate. People can sense when you're not paying attention to them. Put yourself in their shoes. Do you want to be heard when you speak to others?
Face yourself in a mirror. Practise smiling at yourself, poke out your tongue, notice whether your shoulders rise and fall as you breathe, inspect the colour of your eyes, are your shoulders straight or lopsided? Arch your eyebrows! Laugh at yourself! Be totally present with yourself ? it can be totally fun!
If you still have some problems accessing the here and the now, team up with a friend or in a group. You could have the time of your life in the now, filled with much laughter and possibly an insight or two!
Michaela is a graduate of a well known parapsychology academy in Sydney Australia, and is a highly-regarded professional within this field.
She is also a Transformational Coach, certified practitioner of Neuro-Linguistic Programming (NLP), and writer who is totally committed to helping others create positive and action oriented changes to their lives.
A high achiever in many areas of her life, Michaela has extensive experience through not only her varied careers but also her interests and education in the fields of spirituality, aromatherapy and massage, personal development and transformational coaching, to writing and meditation.
Michaela is the author of the eBook 10 Colour Meditation Scripts, and publisher of a monthly e-newsletter called From My Desk which is available via subscription at http://www.michaelascherr.com
Married to David, Michaela has two children, Kristen and Aaron, and a grandchild called Matthew. Michaela and her family currently live in Brisbane Australia. http://www.michaelascherr.com