I would like to share with you a very profound message from the great Edith Eger – you may know of or have read her book ‘The CHOICE’.  In it Edits writes….

‘Freedom is about CHOICE – about choosing compassion, humour, optimism, intuition, curiosity and self-expression.  And to be free is to live in the present.  If we are stuck in the past, saying “If only I had gone there instead of here …” or “If only I had married someone else …”, we are living in a prison of our own making.  Likewise, if we spend our time in the future, saying “I won’t be happy until I graduate…” or “I won’t be happy until I find the right person.”  The only place where we can exercise our freedom of choice is in the present.’

There is so much change in our lives as a result of the past two years and I find people are dealing with it all so differently.  Some are hankering for ‘the way it was’, some are fearful and anxious about the ‘unknown future of things’ and others are ‘choosing to embrace it as it is unfolding.’

There is no right or wrong approach to such monumental change, but I firmly believe we need to choose to live in the present moment.  To be free.  To have courage and to learn from and to move on from this recent pandemic and all its consequences.

“If you are depressed you are living in the past. If you are anxious you are living in the future. If you are at peace you are living in the present.” 

Lao Tzu

For those hankering for ‘the way it was’ – this thinking is keeping you stuck in the past, by living in your head.  This mindset causes you to lose touch with the present moment and it creates barriers between you and the rest of the world.  Barriers between you and your loved ones, your friends, your work colleagues and between you and society at large.  It can prevent you noticing opportunities for doing something new with your family and friends, from growing as a person and in your professional life, and it can prevent you from choosing to connect more openly and energetically with the world.

To help you move from living in your head, try these simple yet effective techniques:

  • Choose to change your thinking – to be thankful for the past, and to embrace your present situation.
  • Choose to see and be thankful for the simple yet profound things in life – the things we tend to take for granted!
  • Start a gratitude journal – and give thanks for a minimum of five things you were thankful for each day.

For those who are fearful and anxious about the ‘unknown future of things’ – this too is restricting your growth. The only thing to fear, is fear itself.  We can’t live in the future, for it is not guaranteed to ever come to pass.  Living in the future robs you of the joy of living in the here and now – in reality.  By all means dream about the future, but live in the present and work towards your dream.

To help you move from living in the future, try these simple yet effective techniques:

  • Choose to feel the fear, but live in the present – acknowledge your feelings of fear and anxiety, but do not let them cripple you into inaction.
  • Choose to trust the Higher Power you believe in – trust that all is well and all will be well.
  • Choose to refocus on your Self – do a personal SWOT – list your strengths, weaknesses or areas for development, the opportunities which you choose to explore and the threats which may be both external and/or internal e.g. are you self-sabotaging yourself?
For those ‘choosing to embrace life as it is unfolding’ – this is to be celebrated.  With this mindset, you have freedom of choice about how and where you find yourself and the direction you wish to move forward in. This is not about letting life happen to you, it is about learning to respond positively and energetically to what life presents – it is all about how you deal with it.

To help you embrace life as it is unfolding, try these simple yet effective techniques:

  • Choose to live in the present – become more assertive, own your self-worth and step into your own power, in the moment – always in the moment.
  • Allow space for discovery and some failure in your life – life itself is about learning and the day you stop learning is very final. Allow yourself to experience failure, as it is from failing that we learn further.
  • Continue to work towards your dreams – dream BIG! Envisage the end result in an open and expansive way and schedule some small actions you can take in the present, to help you achieve the future you dream of.

”Success is not final, failure is not fatal: it is the courage to continue that counts.”

Winston Churchill

If you found this article beneficial, please check out my other related blogs and also my podcasts for more tips and techniques.

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