The “future” is an abstraction we often associate with positivity, progress and something we can shape. The truth is we love the future and often fear it at the same time. I read tarot cards. I do astrology readings, which more often than not are ways of looking into the future or what’s possible. However, I know and need to point out that fear of the future often motivates us more often than we care to admit and acknowledge.
As we look towards a post-quarantine, post pandemic world, there is a lot to consider. Whether we fear future or not is our choice. Resisting the present undermines our ability to shape the future. We need to admit that we’re scared, we’ve been naive or neglectful about certain realities. We need to admit that the world has changed, will not “go back” to where it was and where we were wasn’t all that great either. We have to shape the future with clear eyes, open minds and open hearts.
How do we do that? We need to ask some questions.
Who am I now? Answer this honestly. Own the good and the bad and respect the neutral.
Who do I desire to be?
What changes, adjustments or work do I need to close the gap between who I am and want to be?
What’s the best step I can take, NOW, TODAY, to make those adjustments?
We must also take up these questions as communities, states, and nations. Who we are today shapes who we become. We only ever have the present, no matter how much we speculate about what the future could or should be. It’s time to get deeply present about what our pain points are and what we can do to change them, for the better, in a changed world.
The future is ours, once we fully invest ourselves in the present.
Just a reminder that in 2019, self care doesn’t have to be lavish. It doesn’t have to be expensive. It doesn’t have to be hours of your time. I took a bubble bath last night, and WOW…it did me a world of good. What was different though, why I am bothering to write about it, is that I approached it in a mindful way.
We have so much stimuli coming at us. Our mind can’t process it all. Our minds filter out so much information. We do things to get them done, to check tasks off the list. I decided last night the most meditative thing I could do was be fully present in washing off the cares of the day. I try to begin and end my day with some kind of meditation.
There’s an exercise I do to get present. It’s especially useful when I’m feeling frantic, hurried or scattered.
Here it is:
I identify five things I can see.
the hundreds of bubbles in the water of varying sizes
the pink of my bar soap
the red of my wash cloth
a nearby candle, unlit
my facial cleanser
I identify four things I can hear.
tiny pops of bubbles
my hand moving through the water
footsteps in another part of the house
I identify three things I can touch or feel.
the warmth of the water
the crunch of the bubbles in my hands as I play with them
the coldness of my shoulders, which were not underwater
I identify two things I can smell.
the smell of the bubble bath, bright with a hint of charcoal
the eucalyptus smell of my cold cream
I identify one thing I can taste.
the mint of freshly brushed teeth
This exercise helps me to get really present in what I am doing and sensitizes me to my environment. It encourages me to observe, not just do for doing’s sake. We can buy all the self care our wallets can stand, but we must also invest our time and thought. We must invest our Self in the self care.
For my favorite things and self care ideas, find them on Amazon!
We all have issues. We have things that make life complicated and unpleasant.Weight is a hot button for many people and they get caught in the trap of thinking and even saying, “if only I were thinner,” then waiting to lose weight so that something great and magical can happen for them.
The truth is, happiness is a choice we make each and everyday, fat or thin, young or old, healthy or unhealthy. We can choose how we react to challenging circumstances. We can meet them with resentment and an attitude of entitlement or we can meet them with gratitude and happiness. Happy people choose to be happy, each and every day. That’s not to say things don’t cause us sadness and pain, but we can’t hold onto our pain and anger like a badge of honor, because pain and anger chain us to the past and being happy is an experience that gets us and keeps us in the present, which is so full of so many beautiful things, if we’re paying attention.
Today, choose to be happy and see what it yields for you.