Counselor's Corner: Live in this moment

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We are in 2020. The New Year has started. It may be a difficult year. War with Iran could be imminent. People do not admire the United States anymore. The message sent out to the world is that might and power will overcome. Dialogue and humility have disappeared. Care and compassion have left the house. What will happen next to our country?

The next moment seems filled with fear. So why live in our tomorrows? Why not stay in the present moment and simply be aware of this moment. Happiness results from the embrace and awareness of this very moment. How am I bringing love to this moment? How am I having a profound, spiritual experience in this moment?

I went to a workshop last Saturday morning. As I carefully listened to the people at my table sharing their reactions to the topics presented, I was so impressed by their humility and their compassion. I felt better after listening to them. This happened because I took the focus off of me and paid attention to them.

Every time I depart from being attentive to the present moment, I start acting like I am the “Chair Person of the Universe.” I will worry about so much that I have no control over. The only control I have in life is to embrace this moment reflectively. It is where I discover God and it is where I discover myself.

New Year’s resolutions are made on this last week of the year. New Year’s resolutions are quickly broken on this first week of the year. My resolution this year is to simply pay close attention to the present moment. I never wish to be in a rush to get to the next moment. It is only NOW that is important. When I stop rushing and when I stop worrying about being in control of everything, I begin to slow down and experience life positively. I cannot control what other people do. I can control only one thing in life: how I lovingly embrace this moment and how I find a deeper meaning in this moment.

The other day as I was driving home, someone was tailgating me. At first, I wanted to be angry. I was going the normal speed limit. All sorts of negative judgments went through my head. Then I finally said to myself, “ I will just continue what I am doing and enjoy the journey.” It worked. And the person behind me turned left at the next cross street. And I drove peacefully home.

My thoughts will not change other people into good behavior. My actions can change me into good thinking in this present moment. This means that I must become aware of slowing down in this moment. I must experience what is all around me. The attentiveness to this moment will slow me down. It will give me a deeper experience of God. I will experience the joy in life. This joy comes from the awareness and embrace of this present moment and observing all that is around me.

Two things I need to bring to this moment: gratefulness and love.

When I bring a sense of gratitude and an attitude of love to each moment, I will experience an inner peace. When I bring anger and resentment and blame to the present moment, I will experience tension and frustration.

The present moment is the only thing any of us have. Everything else is fantasy. The only reality happens now. With a sense of gratitude and an attitude of love, I will experience and see clearly the goodness that is all around me and the beauty that is all around me. I will then bring goodness and love to others.

So, my resolution for this New Year of 2020 is simply this: I will embrace this moment with gratitude and love. Each time I do this I will see things very clearly and I will experience goodness and love. It will become an immersion into God’s goodness. There is goodness and beauty everywhere and in each moment. But I must stay in this moment to find it. I must stay in this moment to discover and experience God. Pay attention to this very moment. It will bring me joy and peace. I will see goodness if I keep focused on this moment. Happy present moment in 2020 to all.


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