How to Be More Present in Five Easy Steps

Simple Things You Can Do to Live More in the Moment

In a world of constant interruptions and distractions, knowing how to be more present can be a distinct advantage.

The late Dr. Wayne Dyer, had a powerful quote on being more present; “Our present moment is a mystery that we are part of. Here and now is where all the wonder of life lies hidden. And make no mistake about it, to strive to live completely in the present is to strive for what already is the case.”

What Does it Mean to Be More Present?

Being present can mean different things to people. One definition is it’s our ability to fully experience each moment, without thinking about the past or the future.

The reality is we can only ever experience the present moment. The past is over and the future is not here yet. We tend to bring the past into the present moment, which will also impact the future we’ll create.

Learning to be more present will allow us to fully experience the only thing we’ll ever have, which is “Now.”

Signs That Indicate You Are Not Always Present

Here are some signs that indicate you may not fully be present in your life.

  • You’re always thinking or worried about what will happen in the future.
  • You don’t listen attentively during conversations.
  • You feel disconnected from people.
  • You’re constantly checking into what’s happening in the world via your devices.
  • You keep telling yourself you don’t have enough time.

The more present we are, the better we’ll be able to fully experience what is happening in that moment.

be more present

Costs of Not Being Present

While learning to be more present may seem like a simple thing, there are costs if we are not present.

  • Higher levels of stress or anxiety.
  • Not being able to have real connection with people.
  • Difficult to relax and be calm.
  • Lower levels of optimism.
  • Unwilling to deal with or face difficult situations.

5 Things You Can Do to Be More Present

  1. Be more intentional about everything you do. Before every interaction or activity, a question we can ask is, “What’s my intention?” We can ask a follow-up question, “What do I want to experience in this moment?” We have to learn to be more deliberate with what we do and how we do things.
  2. Don’t obsess about the future. It’s valuable to have visions and goals because that gives us direction in life. However, those are things to come. We can only focus on the “now.” As we give our best attention to the present moment, we’ll also create a better future.
  3. Reduce how much you take on. There is a false notion that we can “have it all” or “do it all.” The truth is we can do what we want, if we develop the mindset, attitude and skills required to achieve it. Most people want a simple life rather than a life that’s constantly busy or full of obligations. It’s better to focus on less things and develop the habit of doing one thing at a time.
  4. Practice making eye contact when speaking to people. The saying, “The eyes are the windows to the soul” suggests we can learn more about a person by looking into their eyes. People feel better connected to someone who is giving them their full attention, rather than someone who appears uninterested or distracted.
  5. Pause and slow down more often. In our busy or hectic lifestyles, allowing ourselves to slow down can be a real gift. When we’re rushing to do something or get somewhere, our energy will be heavy or frantic. We have to learn to be calmer, slow down time and appreciate all that is around us. Taking in deeper, slower breaths and saying “Thank You” more often, are simple ways to be more present.

Conclusion

When we practice being more present daily, worry, doubt and fear disappear. We’ll start to experience each moment fully, which means we’ll enjoy life more as well.

If we continue to allow ourselves to be unintentional or distracted, we’ll find it hard to deal with our daily experiences the best we can. If we want better experiences, learning to be more present is one of the easiest and simplest ways to do so.

Action Step: Review the last conversation you had with someone and evaluate how present you were. Identify things you can do next time you’re in conversation with someone. Start adopting these practices into your daily routine.

Question: What are other things we can do to be more present?

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