Category Archives: Mindfulness

Mindfulness blog posts from Verlyne Nzojibwami M.Sc., registered psychologist in Calgary, Alberta, Canada.

Living in the present

Living in the present is such a healing and lighter way of living your life. But what does it actually mean to live in the present? My clients sometimes ask: “does it mean that I cannot think about the past or the future?” Not at all. That is impossible. We live in a society where we need to think in the future in order to plan the next day, week or month. We also think about the past when we remember something we might have done yesterday or the week before.

Thinking about the past or present, in itself, is not the problem. It becomes a problem when we let the past and future dictate the present moment. I can say, for example, I did not feel good yesterday, so I find it hard to feel good today; or tomorrow I will be giving a presentation at work so I am nervous about it all day today. It is absolutely normal for our past and future to affect us but if it is affecting every single moment of the present, we are missing on what the present can offer.

Allowing the past or future to constantly dictate the present can be heavy and exhausting. The goal is to be aware of the past or the future, to simply note it, without letting it guide this very moment. I realize this is easier said than done. The first step to change though is awareness. You can start by noticing how often in your day you are living in retrospect or in anticipation of what is to come. Is it more than you would like to? Is it becoming exhausting? Do you find yourself thinking so much about the past and future that you are missing this very moment? Perhaps you are forgetful, absent-minded or feel anxious all the time. Such a way of living can create a lot of stress and anxiety for you and those around you. Various methods of mindfulness and meditation can be useful in helping you live more in the present.