You hear the words ‘becoming present’, and your mind automatically shifts to an image of a person sitting in lotus position for hours or days, high up on a mountain. Thankfully, this is not a requirement for being present in your daily life and reaping the benefits of mindfulness practice. Instead, you can use the four simple techniques to become present throughout your day:
1) Bring awareness to the breath
This method is effective because you can do it anywhere and at any time, without drawing attention to yourself, it is useful to practice this as often as you can during the day. It will build up positive energy like a bank account to draw from when you encounter negative energy.
This method merely requires becoming aware of your rhythm of breathing. Turn your attention to your breathe moving in and out, if when you start, you feel a shallowness or tightness, take a few deeper to get the oxygen flowing, but other than that, just notice the natural movement of air.
Focusing attention on your breath brings you into the present movement and out of the level of the mind. It is where joy and peace reside. It may appear awkward at first, and you may not experience anything, but following a regular practice will soon give you the ability to shift your attention to a place of deeper consciousness. Just consider that by inhaling you are taking positive energy inside you and by exhaling you are removing your negative energy outside and b becoming much more pure.
2) Focus on object
For this method, chose an object that does not bring up strong emotions for you. Look at it without attaching a name or label. Let go of all judgment about it. Notice details like color, shape or texture, but without seeking to analyze it. Living things like plants or animals works particularly well for this exercise, but any item will do.
After a few moments, you may feel its energy or aliveness. You might feel like you are seeing it for the first time, You will have moved out of the level o the mind and into the present moment. Moreover, it is possible to do this with inanimate objects because everything has a certain amount of energy associated with it.
3) Become aware of your inner body
You have a physical body, but you also have an inner body. The physical body allows you to access the inner body, which is where you find consciousness. It takes you out of the dimension of space and time in the mind.
This method works better if you close your eyes, but it is also possible if you leave them open. Bring your focus to parts of your body, feeling the energy and aliveness of it. A shift will happen that you are aware of, and you start to notice your “beingness” at this moment.
This practice is not as convenient as the other two methods if you need to close your eyes, but it can still work well in a waiting room, on a plane, or at home. If you do need to close your eyes, you will merely look as if you are taking a power nap.
4) Give full attention to your task
Any task or chore that you perform in your daily life is a potential method for becoming present, washing dishes, mowing the lawn, ironing clothes, and walking the dog can be form of meditation. If you need to do things that you do not like to do, turn them into a spiritual practice. You will find joy in the activity and in your life without needing entertainment or thrills.
That becomes a portal into the present moment when you give them your full attention. When you place your complete focus on the activity , you will stop thinking random thoughts. That is why time “flies” when you engage in something you like. You are giving it your complete focus and time ceases to exist. You are only conscious of this moment.
An excellent example of this method is to become entirely focused on chopping vegetables. Notice the way the knife slides through the vegetables. Pay attention to the sound, its color and texture of each piece that you hold. Become fully immersed in what you are doing. It does not leave room for random thoughts to enter.
These are four practical and straightforward methods for becoming present throughout your day. You do not need to set aside a particular time or place just pick one that works well for you and practices it as often as possible. It will soon become second nature. The real job is being consistent in your practice.