Dangers of not living in the moment

By M.Farouk Radwan, MSc.

Not living the moment

In the morning people run because they are afraid not to arrive on time for their work.

During work people keep thinking about the piles of work they have to finish before they leave. On their way home people keep thinking about the potential problems that might arise when they reach their homes.

When being at home people keep thinking about the problems that happened at work that day. When people go to bed they keep thinking of the difficult day they are going to have tomorrow.

As you can see, people either think of the past problems or the future anticipated dangers but they rarely enjoy the present moment!

Dangers of not living the moment

When we keep thinking about the past we recall the feelings of guilt, regret and depression while when we think about future problems we summon the feelings of worry, anxiety and fear.

Surely living with bad emotions all the time will result in a miserable life, how can you feel good while you are constantly worried about the future or while you are constantly blaming yourself for something that happened in the past?

Moreover, real enjoyment doesn’t come until you know how to live the moment. If you are doing something that you like while thinking of tomorrow’s meeting with your boss then you won’t enjoy what you are doing at all.

In addition to all of this, the continues exposure to bad feelings might result later on in unhappy feelings, in being dissatisfied with your life and in depression.

One more problem associated with not living in the moment is having less mental resources to get your important tasks done. When you are not 100% focused on the moment your performance at whatever you are doing will decrease. When you obsesses about the past for example a part of your brain's resources get locked up and so you will fail to utilize the full power of your brain.

This can also lead to so many health issues since your body and brain are only allowed to fully relax when your mind is clear. Constantly worrying about the future or thinking about the past can lead to serious health issues.

How to live the moment

The first step in living the moment is to realize that you are not living it. The second step is to start monitoring your thoughts and your self talk then direct them to the present rather than the past or the future. Of course there would be times where you should be thinking of the past or the future but in most times it’s not going to be necessary and it will only prevent you from enjoying the present.

Whenever you find yourself having thoughts that are distracting you from living the moment redirect them again and start thinking of the present. This might take some effort in the beginning but after a short while it will become a habit and your mind will automatically return back to thinking about the present as soon as it deviates from it.

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