We live in a world focused on the next big thing. Retail puts out beach chairs at Easter, fall decor before summer ends and Christmas with the Halloween candy. Influencers on social media publish holiday gift guides in August and everyone seems to have Christmas trees up in perfectly decorated homes. We are bombarded and sometimes overwhelmed by what is coming and often pushed to feel we must keep up.
If you’re a fan of a certain holiday or season I can understand the push to get there quick. I don’t fault people for doing what makes them happy. I wonder though with so many people seemingly focusing on the next big thing how many are enjoying the moments they are in. If you feel that overthinking a situation or spending more time focusing on upcoming things besides the present moment is causing your stress, practicing mindfulness can be beneficial to making a positive thought change.
Being mindful of the present can direct our thoughts and focus away from stressors. This isn’t to be confused with making future plans/goals. These types of future thinking and planning shouldn’t be stressful, but should help facilitate growth and positive change. You don’t want to eliminate them. Dwelling on what is to come or what needs to be done however can cause stress. Take time to listen to yourself and understand your own thoughts.
It can be difficult sometimes with all of life’s distractions to keep one’s attention in the present moment. Mindfulness isn’t easily maintained and can require lots of practice to get one’s focus back on the present. Some individuals find that by focusing on the senses of sound, feelings in the moment or other real time sensations they are able to better focus on the present. There are many teachings/therapy models that involve mindfulness practices.
I have found that by allowing myself some quiet time alone with my thoughts or to meditate helps me better focus on the present. Studies have shown that people who are able to practice mindfulness are better at managing their depression and anxiety. It is worth the effort to strive to be more mindful and aware of the present. Positive thinking is a gift and it can transform your life. Remember one day at a time. You’re doing great!
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