It's amazing what we begin to notice when we are actually present to our lives. So often, we are lost in a haze of thoughts, worrying about what may happen or fretting over something we did yesterday. Meanwhile, this precious moment goes by as it's background scenery that we rarely, if ever, actually notice.
Mindfulness, which is being talked about a lot in the media these days, is the new (old) code-word for meditation; the simple act of being present to what is actually taking place in our life. Not 5 minutes from now, or a year from now, but here and now. Because the reality is; all we ever have is now. In fact, our whole lives will unfold in the space we call the present moment, and even though we will spend most of our time thinking about the past and future, the truth is, we will never visit those imaginary destinations. Not once. So it makes sense that we might want to start spending more time in the only space that we will actually ever inhabit our whole life; the here and now.
The question for many is; how do I do this? How do I break the minds habitual pattern of constant thought and projection toward the past and future, and start living in the now? And the answer comes back to that ages old practice of meditation; of turning our attention toward our breathing in order to relax and BE where we are.
You might take a moment right now and see for yourself, the power of focusing on the breath instead of the compulsive activity (chaos?) of the mind. Close your eyes and take 3 refreshing breaths. Really be there with all of your focus, as you feel the breath flow in and out of the body. What you will likely notice is an immediate relaxing of the mind and, most importantly, because the breath is always happening right now, you also find yourself in the present moment.
With this key, all you have to do to be present in your life is remember to enjoy and come back to your breathing whenever, and wherever, you can; in every activity of your life.
"The Buddha was asked, "What have you gained from meditation?
He replied, "Nothing! However, let me tell you what I have lost:
Anger, anxiety, depression, insecurity and fear of old age and death."