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I have to teach mindfulness and meditation. I also get to teach it, thank goodness, but I have to teach it. There's a saying that "we teach what we need to learn". In this case, I do it to keep reinforcing what I need to live. It's not that I'll actually die's more like finding a way to make life better, much better.

While making the time to meditate and wrestling with monkey mind among other things isn't always easy, the concept we're dealing with here is pretty simple. When we can cozy up to the NOW, we have a good chance of finding some peace of mind. The thing is, we usually want to bounce around between the past ("oh, why did that happen?!?") and the future ("I'm worried that will happen") all while blithely skipping right over the NOW.

The interesting thing is that NOW is the only thing that's real. We occupy ourselves with and even become enslaved to concepts that either aren't happening anymore or haven't even happened, yet (and probably won't). We allow these fears and regrets to take up a lot of head space and we convince ourselves that we have no control over them. Sometimes, we actually get caught up in the drama of it all, especially when the ego says it might help us be or feel important.

The beauty of NOW is that it is available to EVERYONE and all the time. We simply have to rewire ourselves to get back in touch with it. I say "get back" because as babies we only know the NOW. If you watch a baby (I get to watch a lot of them as an OB/Maternity nurse), they are plugged in to the moment: they're mostly either hungry or full, need a diaper change and/or a burp, are distracted by a high-contrast image, or they're falling asleep. If they're crying or content, it's because of whatever is happening right now. They're not complaining about that trip down the birth canal yesterday and they're definitely not wondering if they'll get into a good play group next year. They're not even worried what the weather will be like tomorrow.

No matter who we are, or where we are, or what age we are (after we get through that baby phase), we can take comfort in the NOW. Even if there's something going on that we're not exactly enjoying, we can "manage" this minute and then the next and then the next ... It's when we try to be in control of something that hasn't taken place yet or we go over a past situation, as if we could change it, that we slowly feel like we are losing our minds. In some ways we are because we are ignoring the present while trying to bring the past or future into the present and that can only happen in our crazy thoughts.

So, take a deep breath and feel the air going into your body. Then, pause for a moment and let the air out while you observe it leaving your body and focus on just that. You've just experienced the NOW.

Close your eyes and notice what you hear. There might be actual sounds from a street outside or someone in your vicinity doing something or the hum of a heater or air conditioner. You've just experienced the NOW.

Take in the scent of a special soap or a sip of tea and really notice either one. You've just experienced the NOW.

I could give you countless examples, but those can get you started. The comfort of NOW is that it's always available to you when you remember to tap into it. This is what I wish for you. Have fun finding the NOW.

Sparkles and Love,

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About the Author




Barbara L Cummings, MS, RN

is a sassy Queen-ager whose mission is to co-create a happier, healthier life with and for others.

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