We all want to live in the moment… so what’s stopping us?
Well, it’s pretty clear that our thoughts are what prevents us from living in the moment. But how do we stop giving attention to the thoughts that make us suffer and prevent us from fully enjoying this moment? You may have tried focusing on the present moment, you may have tried controlling your thoughts or silencing your thoughts, or you may have tried different types of body exercises. But has it worked? Have you been living in the moment? Many different types of activities can help us to experience the present moment, but almost all of the techniques we are taught don’t actually help us very much to live in the moment. These types of practices aren’t enough to help us live in the moment because they don’t address the reason why we give attention to thoughts.
When you believe someone’s words, those words create emotions
To understand how to live in the moment, we first need to understand why we give attention to thoughts. So why do we give attention to thoughts? The simple answer is: because we believe them. To demonstrate how to live in the moment, I would like you to image a few hypothetical scenarios.
- If a random person tells you, “The world is going to end tomorrow”, and you believe them, how would you feel? You will likely experience fear. And if this random person kept talking you would probably give their words your full attention. But if you didn’t believe them, then how would their comment make you feel? You almost certainly wouldn’t feel any fear, and if they kept talking, you probably wouldn’t give their words much attention.
- If a co-worker tells you, “I deleted all of your emails!”, and you believe them, how do you think you would feel? You would probably get angry and give him your complete attention. But if your co-worker told you this, and you didn’t believe them at all because they are always joking around, then how do you think you would feel? You almost surely wouldn’t experience anger because there would be nothing to be angry about. You also probably wouldn’t give what he’s saying much attention because it wouldn’t be seen as important.
- If you are watching a tragic scene in a movie, and you believe the actors, how would you feel? You would likely experience the sadness of the movie. You would also probably be fully enthralled with what the actors were saying. But if you didn’t believe the actors at all, then how would you feel? You almost certainly wouldn’t feel sad, and you might not give all of your attention to the movie.
When you don’t believe thoughts, they don’t create emotions or take your attention
These scenarios demonstrate that when you believe someone’s words to be true, those words create emotions and they are very likely to take your attention. But when you don’t believe someone’s words, their words don’t have the power to create emotions and they are much less likely to take your attention.
The same is true of the thoughts (words) in your mind. If you believe a negative thought about yourself or your life, that thought will create an unwanted emotion and take your attention. However, if you don’t believe that thought, it quite simply won’t create the unwanted emotion and is much less likely to take your attention.
As long as you are believing all of your thoughts to be true, they will continue to create your emotions and take your attention. You simply can’t live in the moment if you believe your thoughts to be true.
How to live in the moment
If you want to stop experiencing a specific emotion or you want to stop giving attention to a specific thought… all you need to do is identify that thought and recognize that you don’t know whether the thought is true. When you stop believing that thought, your attention will be left on this moment. And you will be left in peace. The experience of the present moment is always fulfilling when we don’t believe our thoughts about it.
As you disbelieve more of the thoughts that create your suffering, you can be happy in more and more situations, and happier for a larger percentage of your days. The fewer thoughts you believe, the more you will be living in the moment, and the more peace, love, laughter, wholeness, enthusiasm, and gratitude you will experience in your life.
If you would like to start disbelieving your thoughts now, go ahead and try my free web app “The 5 Steps to The Present Moment” by clicking the following link: http://liveinthemoment.org/the-5-steps-to-the-present-moment
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