How to Live in the Present

If only I can get through this season of life.

I just can’t wait until graduation … finances are in order … life becomes easier.

Counting down the days until vacation.

I wish I had a spouse … a child … a family … a job.

I’ve been known to whisper a few of those things before. How about you?

Even as children of God, we can be guilty of wishing away seasons of life. Instead of engaging in the present, our eyes are glued to the future.

We can miss out on the grace available to us right here. Right now.

Today, will you accept the challenge to live fully in the moment?

Here are 4 ways to begin living present starting today:

1. Foster an attitude of gratitude. Paul challenges us to give thanks in all circumstances, even those that seem undeserving of thanks. In other words, the focus isn’t on expressing gratitude every moment, but in the midst of every situation—despite the ease or difficulty of the circumstances.

2. Slow down your daily pace. Instead of rushing from one event to the next, take a long, hard look at your schedule for the week ahead. Allow buffer time before meetings, activities, or events. Choose to fully engage wherever you are. Turn off your phone. Play with your children. Really listen to your co-workers or friends.

3. Partake in life-giving activities. Each week, find something to do that breathes life and joy into your soul—an activity that rejuvenates you. For some, that could be reading your favorite book or jamming out to your favorite playlist. For others, that may be jogging through the neighborhood or hiking on a nearby trail. Still others may love to window-shop or paint and sculpt. Whatever you choose, carve time to do something that excites and replenishes you.

4. Do one thing at a time. While this isn’t possible in all situations (sometimes you just have to chat on the phone, while washing the dog, and checking email), attempt to engage in one thing at a time. While there is beauty (and efficiency) in multi-tasking, uni-tasking allows us to fully participate and give our very best to one thing at a time. 

As you choose to live in the present starting today, may you lay hold of the wonder and joy that is available right here and right now—no matter what situation you’re facing.