Ralph Waldo Emerson once said, "We are always getting ready to live but never living." How sad (and true) is that? While looking back to learn from our experiences is good, and looking ahead to plan for our future is important, we need to learn to live in the moment as well. This is something that comes particularly easy to me. In fact, I enjoy living in the moment so much that it can seem that I don't remember anything or worry at all. This is something I'm working on, a balance.
Anyway, for those of you who don't have this "gift," here are some of my tips for living (and loving) the moments in your life:
1.) Start the day off right. I try to start every day with prayer, scripture study, journal writing, and yoga. This always makes me feel peaceful, centered, invigorated and ready to face the day.
2.) Be interested. Take interest in the people, places, events, music, food, sights, sounds, etc. around you. It's the details in our lives that make them rich and full.
3.) Challenge yourself. Whether it's mental, physical, or spiritual, keep raising your expectations. Not too much, you don't want your goals to be unattainable, but they should be high enough that you grow in the process.
4.) Get away. Traveling broadens our horizons and breaks down old ways of living and thinking, which can open us up to new possibilities.
5.) Take risks. In the end, it will be things we didn't do that become our regrets. Taking risks like going for things we really want, trying something new, telling someone how we feel, makes us stronger. And even the risks that don't turn out the way we want will be for our learning and experience.
6.) Follow your passions. Make sure the things you love are a part of your life in some way, on a daily basis if possible. If your passion is Italy, you may not be able to go there every day, but you could try out an Italian meal, spend a few minutes learning an Italian phrase, or browse the internet for articles or pictures of Italy. Even if all you do is think about your passions each day, you attract more of that to your life, which makes you a happier, more fulfilled individual.
7.) Cut things from your life that are a waste of time and energy. (self-explanatory)
8.) Face your fears. Courage is not the absence of fear, it is action in spite of fear. Whether your fear is socializing, speaking in public, or spiders, facing them weakens their power over you, avoiding them makes them stronger.
9.) Count your blessings. Recognizing the beauty of nature, the love and comfort of friends and family, the excitement of new possibilities, and the joy of life reminds us how happy we already are.
10.) Have faith. One reason I seem to never worry is that I know that despite any efforts I make, all things are in the hands of God. I know His plans for me are far greater than any I could have for myself.