Being present is a challenge in today’s rushed society. We’re constantly multi-tasking, whether that means answering a work email at a red light or checking out our favorite department store’s Instagram account while waiting for our soy latte at Starbucks. We’re always on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and constantly texting and emailing, often from the time we wake up to the time our heads hit the pillow.
In short, we’re constantly in touch via our cell phones. In touch with work, in touch with friends, in touch with family. But being in touch isn’t the same as being present. Being in touch constantly prevents us from being present. What is being present? Being present is enjoying what is happening around us at any given moment. It means being aware of what is happening around us, not just being aware of what’s happening on our phones. It means playing with your child without needing to check for text messages. It means taking a brisk walk around the neighborhood and leaving your phone at home. It means having dinner with your best friend and leaving your phone in your bag the entire time.
Make time to be present. Resist the urge to check your phone first thing upon waking. Tell yourself you’ll only check Facebook twice a day, instead of every hour. Designate tech-free days once a week on a weekend day where you unplug completely and not use a phone, iPad or computer. You’ll start to notice your mind slows down from its frenetic pace. You’ll feel more peaceful. You’ll appreciate nature more. Your children will appreciate that you’re really there with them, not just with them in between phone checks. So put away your phone and be present.