On my walk home from work one day recently, per usual I was rushing. Trying to get home as quickly as possible from work, gradually walking faster and faster trying to escape the day. It wasn’t until I was halfway home that it suddenly dawned on me that I had nowhere to be. Why was I in such a rush? I was already out of the office and the weather was extremely pleasant. There was little traffic around and lots of other people were out walking their dogs. To say the least, it was very pleasant. So once again I asked myself, why was I in such a panic to get home?
In our busy and hectic society, I feel as though we are always thinking ahead to the future which somehow robs us of our present. Always thinking of later on, tomorrow or next year but rarely ever the moment we are presently in. Recently I learn’t about ‘mindfulness’, a concept that focuses on being present and aware in the current moment. Almost in a way, adopting a slower pace of life and not to be corny but to stop and smell the roses (so to speak).
I think constantly about the future and often find myself rarely living in the present moment and often missing out on simple joys. Does thinking about what I’m going to have for my next meal rob me of the simple joy of enjoying my current one? I think this can increase our stress and anxiety levels, always trying to think about what may be instead of what is. Perhaps we need to be more mindful and focus on the now and enjoy the moment, I want to be more aware of my surroundings and other people.
For the rest of my walk home that day, I slowed my pace. I took some deep breaths, watched as an excited dog was attempting to sprint to wards the park (much to the dismay of his owner). I suddenly felt all the stress from my day at work lift off my shoulders and realised I was enjoying a slow meander home.
It was making me happy and it didn’t cost a cent or take up unwanted space in my life.
Mindfulness brings with it simple joy and time for living in the present moment.
Be mindful on your journey, after all- it’s free!