by Carolyn M Bennett-Sullivan
I spent a magical hour this morning taking a walk in one of the area State Parks. I dropped my daughter off at camp and decided to walk the trail near the camp. The sun was shining, the heat of the day was on it's way yet hadn't made its full debut as hot and humid.
The trail was mostly shaded, the gravel crunching under my feet as I listened to the sounds of the birds whistling and chirping in the canopy of trees and shrubs surrounding me. I felt relaxed and happy to be exercising and taking some time for myself.
Few people passed me along the way, another walker, a couple of joggers either talking or listening to their iPods. I felt content to be by myself to enjoy this moment of solitude and the nature around me.
As I walked further along the path I began to hear the rushing of water from a nearby creek thinking about a friend and how I thought he would enjoy this walk as well. I noticed a path to a boulder on the creek. Normally I would've kept walking, today it beckoned me and I listened.
I stepped over the stones to the boulder remembering the woods and creek I played in as a kid. I sat on the boulder dipping my hand into the cold water and looking up into the trees and sky.
I breathed into the moment asking "How can I serve and live the lifestyle I desire"? By living through your heart I heard. My mind began to pull into the "to-do's" and "how's" of my life.
My heart called me back into the moment. And into the moment I sat listening, breathing, enjoying all that it had to offer. In that moment I felt joy, peace and the glow of life within me and around me.
It felt so good to let go of the rest of the day and to enjoy the present moment. A little while later, I knew it was time to move forward with my day so I got up and continued on my walk.
I began to think about how often I allow my mind to rush into the next thing and how easy it is for me not to stay present in the moment. Even that morning as I was driving my daughter to camp, I heard her talking about something and I was thinking about something else basically ignoring her.
She's babbling about something I thought to myself. But were my thoughts more important that paying attention to her? Not really.
Hmmm, being present in the moment, what if I really focused on that? How would I show up for other people, for myself and what difference would it make in my life and others?
This morning's walk came with a gift of revelation. As I stayed present to the moment I felt my heart beating, the heat of the day on my skin, the strength of my legs as I climbed the hills on the trail and joyful for today.
I also sensed greater confidence knowing as I focus on the present I feel less stress and overwhelm about all the doings of each day. Step by step I moved forward on the trail through the woods and into the open path back to where my car was parked.
As the sun shone directly on me now I made a commitment to do my best to be present in every moment today and in everything I did. What path are you walking today? Multitasking, busy-ness, overwhelm or being present to each moment giving your full attention and focus to it?
What if you allowed yourself to focus on the present moment?
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(One tip) before we're done. When you allow yourself to focus on the present moment you open the door to greater clarity and confidence within yourself.
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