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The 10 Steps to Bliss is based on my personal experience. These steps have been created from my spiritual “go-to” list for when I need to drift back to center. Right now, release any specific expectations you have about this process. You will get better at letting go throughout, but let’s start right here, right now.
Step 1 of the 10 Steps to Bliss – Living the Present Moment
Let’s start with a clear understanding of what the present moment is… The present moment right here, right now. It is only an instant. These instants keep happening over and over. So, whether you’re experiencing the present moment or not, the moment itself is happening regardless. For example, picture a digital stopwatch. You press the start button and it starts counting seconds and hundredths of seconds immediately. As you watch those numbers, each time they change, is a different moment. Needless to say, in this example, there are a lot of moments happening! Now, look away for a few seconds and look back at the stopwatch. The moments kept happening, even when you stopped paying attention to them. Capturing those moments, experiencing those moments with all of our attention is what living the present moment is all about.
Some people will say “well, right now I feel sad…” – this is not true. Your sadness is most likely in the past. It’s not right here, right now. Your thoughts have drifted back to something bad that happened such as a loved one passing away or someone calling you a name, etc. In this moment, everything is perfect. We want for nothing, have access to an abundance of indulgences and have all the unconditional love the Universe delivers on a regular basis right at our fingertips.
What is so great about being in the Present Moment?
When we are fully present, experiencing this moment for what it really is, not thinking about the past or the future, we feel fully alive. It’s like a burst of cosmic energy enters your brain and fills up the rest of your body. This is our essential state. Pure awareness. In this state, we experience our senses amplified. We can smell, taste, touch, feel and hear all at once. Everything is amazing. We are in awe of all that we see. We are grateful for the chance to be alive to see it. There is nothing better than a true experience of the present moment. Not only is the immediate experience amazing, but the lasting effect is has on our mindset is remarkable. More patience, tolerance, love and compassion will come naturally as we continue to visit this sacred space more often.
The good news is, we don’t need to change anything other than our awareness in order to be experience the present moment. We don’t have to try and change the moment or do anything differently than we normally would except focusing our attention on the moment – without thinking about the past or the future. If we can make that happen, then we are in the present moment. We are experiencing each moment for all of it’s glory. This is much easier than it sounds. Our goal here is to do nothing. We have to stop doing something and do nothing. Don’t think about your day at work today and don’t worry about your day tomorrow either. If you start to, stop yourself. Just focus on right now in this instant.
A couple tricks I use for this:
When thinking about the future, I remind myself I’ll have time to worry about tomorrow…tomorrow. There’s a whole day for tomorrow and in that day, I’ll do everything that tomorrow needs me to do, so there is no need to steal time from today to do it. If the future I’m worried about is later today, then I’ll tell myself the same thing with just a little twist. “There will be plenty of time later today to worry about and deal with that. Right now, that is not reality. THIS is reality. Right here. Right now.”
When thinking about the past, I will ask myself a question: “Is there anything you would do differently if this happened again?” Good. Then do that next time. For now, it’s history, not reality. Sometimes I will joke with myself about it and say, “you should have taken a picture as it would have lasted longer”. It’s a joke on the fact that thinking about the past is mostly a waste of energy and effort. If there is something to learn, then learn it and move on.
Here’s another one…look closely at something. A flower, a pet, the wall, anything. Look closely at it and notice as much detail as you can. Do this for 30 seconds. Ask yourself some questions about what you are witnessing. Who invented/created this? What would it look like under a microscope? How many different colors are present? After just a couple questions, you will be “in the present moment”. You aren’t thinking about the past or the future at all, you are honed in on the object of your observation and it’s amazing. You feel intrigue, you feel amazement, you feel life energy.
Give yourself some leeway if it’s easier. Tell your mind, “We are just going to let go blank for a few seconds, then we can go back to worrying again”. Convince yourself to give it a try! Then, eventually change a few seconds to a few minutes. Whatever it takes to empty the mind and experience the moment. The more you can do this, the greater your life experience will be. You will actually live longer because you will experience more moments of time. You will get more time actually being alive!
Experiencing the present moment 24/7 is impossible as far as I know. I’ve experienced the present moment for a couple hours at a time and that’s been rare. We don’t need to worry about keeping track of how much time we spend in the present however. Just be aware of it and try to experience it as much as possible. Even if it’s only a few times a day, that will go a long way toward enhancing your life experience.
Here are some common things that help us experience the present moment:
– Listening to music
– Breathing exercises
– Playing golf
This first step is crucial because it sets the stage for the rest of the experience. Take some time, maybe even a day or two, and try to focus in on witnessing the present moment and experiencing the present moment before going to Step 2. I hope it helps! 🙂