3 Tips for focusing on the present

Do not dwell in the past, do not dream of the future, concentrate the mind on the present moment. Buddha

What are you thinking about right now?  Are you totally present or are you going over your chores you must do later today?  Perhaps you are looking over what you need to do for work.  There are times for planning and reviewing what you have done.  But there is also a lot of time where we must be present. I was in a meeting recently where everyone there was either looking at their phone or their laptop.  I gazed around and wondered who in fact was really present, thinking about what the meeting was called about or were they mentally else where.  I know I have this problem too, someone will talk to me and I will not make eye contact, just nod.

Practice being present

As you try to be present you will notice your mind will wonder.  That will happen then just bring it back to the present.  We all must work on this.  In a home with two kids that like to talk a lot it can be hard to be present, we may concentrate on other things.  Be patient with yourself it may take time to build up to being more present.

Take a breath

By taking a breath you focus on something quite simple.  After that take your mind back to where you need to focus.  Sometimes a simple deep breath can get you to understand where you are at.  If you feel stressed it can help you relax and re-focus.

Avoid the myth multitasking

I have discussed this before from Anthony Paustian’s talk at Celebrate Innovation Week.  He made a nice parody video of the allusion of multitasking.  Realize that you can only do one thing at a time and focus on it.  Be present in the activity, think about the task and how you do it.  I once thought it was odd that my father-in-law would enjoy just sitting in the grass and pulling weeds.  I have come to realize it can relax the mind to do something simple like that.  I actually enjoy raking the lawn for its simplicity. What ways do you help stay focused on the present?

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