We are proud to have Kamini Desai, an expert in the inner sciences of yoga, relaxation and artful living write a blog for us! Kamini teaches us the importance of living in each moment.
Most of us have an internal “To Do” list. We tell ourselves when we have enough money, when we lose the 10 pounds, when the kids are squared away, when the big project is done, then we will relax.
The “when” strategy for happiness depends on time. We tell ourselves one day we will arrive at relaxation for good. But the truth is, after a short respite, our “internal to do” list spontaneously re-populates and we find ourselves off to the races again, running and running, but never seeming to arrive for very long.
Think of your favorite food. For me, it’s pizza. I can think about my favorite food, but where is the only place I can actually enjoy it? NOW. We can work in the sphere of time, but the only place we will ever get the fulfillment and enjoyment is by showing up in the moment NOW. Yet, it’s the one place we rarely ever are! We can be so busy getting our to do list done, we could literally miss the one place our life is happening. We are so busy getting to the next thing, we never enjoy this thing.
So how can we experience fulfillment NOW? There are two ways to clean the house, do your accounting or be with the kids. When you are cleaning the house, but resenting it or rushing through it, notice how it feels like a chore. But when you are totally absorbed in the experience of cleaning the house, it can actually become a deeply fulfilling experience.
Whatever you do, be totally present in it, pay attention to it, be absorbed by it. Become attentive to every detail so much so that there is no part of you outside the experience wishing it was different. When we are completely lost in the moment, we are filled-full by it. When we are divided from the moment, we lose the intrinsic fulfillment available in it.
No matter what it is, you can make anything a more nourishing and less draining experience. The next time you are worried about something, try coming back to your present moment’s surroundings. Rather than paying attention to your mind, pay attention to NOW.
Notice the act of walking, sitting, speaking, breathing …and the sensations in your body while doing them. Every time you notice your mind wanting to go back to its source of worry, bring it back to what is happening NOW. Notice how this breaks the momentum of worry, calms you and allows you to have more perspective on the situation when you do come back to it.
Even situations that irritate you, you may find that choosing to be there totally is less assaulting than resisting the moment and wishing you were somewhere else. The more you are present and the less divided you are, the more you will be able to be where you are with relaxation and ease.
By Kamini Desai, PhD
Education Director, Amrit Yoga Institute
Contact the author at: [email protected]