Living in a world that places an emphasis on productivity, progress, and advancements, it seems as though most people spend their lives frantically running around trying to get more done in less time. Our future-oriented society ends up creating a population rattled with frazzled nerves, frustration, and anxiety. Instead of finding joy in our work, more often than not, when we rush to “beat the clock” we end up feeling exhausted, frustrated, and depleted.
The art of Zen (finding peace and inner balance) starts with living in the present moment. This means focusing our attention on the “here and now”, rather than the past (playing a mental “home movie”) or the future (anticipating or worrying about what will happen). This is difficult initially to do, as it requires concentrated effort and a controlled mind. But, over time, this form of active meditation becomes second nature.
This training helps us become more creative, inspired, and productive because it forces us to actually get involved in every process, rather than allowing our minds to wander or become distracted.
Dr. Richard Carlson, author of the book You Can Be Happy No Matter What (Five Principles For Keeping Life in Perspective) says, “the more present-moment oriented you become, the easier it will be to stay on track, get focused, concentrate, and achieve your goals.”
Living in the present moment not only engages our mind and bodies, it also is the key to happiness.