Being present in the moment is a state of mind that might be difficult at the moment. Having to practice social distancing after 4 days gives me a reason to pause. I am such a people person. The reality of more distancing is truly something to think about. I long to see my grandsons, daughters, and co-workers. It really hit today when my oldest daughter said she would drive by just so she could see my face. I gulped, as my tears welled up in my eyes. Those words hit home. The sober reality of being present in the moment was even more important.
Elizabeth Gilbert recently shared some seeds of wisdom on being present in the moment. A practice shared with her by a friend when she was in need. As she shared, the feeling of being sad, frightened or anxious can take us to a place of uncertainty. This particular practice of being in the present is quite simple. 5-4-3-2-1can be practiced throughout the day. I did it several times a day this week and realized this was worth sharing. This is a practice that can be done by anyone and anywhere.
5- CAN YOU SEE THINGS?
Being present starts by counting five things that you see around you. As I wandered through my garden, here is what I noticed.
4 – CAN YOU HEAR ME NOW?
What 4 things can you hear? Two brothers, neighborhood children, were outside riding their bikes. This was a pleasant sound earlier today. It meant there was human interaction – a sound I have missed this week.
The sound of someone with a leaf blower. People can use this time to catch up on last-minute seasonal tasks. Being present in the moment means we do not have to rush right now.
The gentle breeze created the sound of nature’s wind chimes. To hear the subtle rattle in the trees helped clear my thoughts. Clearing one’s mind is a great way to practice being in the present.
What sounded like small jackhammers was actually a chorus of woodpeckers. The art of hunting for food in the deadwood of large trees stood out in the otherwise quiet of the day.
3 – FEELING THREE THINGS
It was a bit challenging deciding on just three things that reflected what I could feel. There was so much in the garden that I could feel.
Breathing deeply, in and out, allowed me to feel my lungs expand. The feeling of the crisp air as I breathed in was refreshing to my spirit. I was so thankful to be able to experience this. The chilly air was quite refreshing and helped my body maintain a balanced temperature as I raked last year’s leaves from my walkway. Practicing being present in the moment definitely has kept me in a positive mental place.
As I reached under a rose bush, a thorn caught my sleeve. Working to release my sleeve, I noticed an ootheca. More commonly known as a praying mantis egg case. When the female praying mantis creates this protective case it is soft. Eventually, it hardens for the safekeeping of the babies within. Touching this crispy outer shell with its ridges, created a feeling of hope. I caressed it and hoped that they would all survive and be a part of my garden’s eco-system. Not cleaning up the garden has its virtues. I have found more surprises throughout the garden.
2 – TWO FOR YOU
Focusing on two things that I could smell was one of the easiest things to practice. The scent of a frequently used body oil rode the breeze every time I moved.
Oak Moss by Anu Prestonia is a hydrating body oil with an earthy scent. As I raked, my body warmed up and the scent intensified and immersed me into a good mental space. This fragrance allows me to be present at this very moment.
The herb pot by my mailbox is coming to life. When I touch the emerging oregano leaves, the scent causes me to daydream. I imagine cooking a nice pot of pasta sauce. Using fresh herbs from the garden like this oregano, fresh basil, or even leaves from my Bay Leaf plant takes me to a place of calm.
1 – JUST PICK ONE
Finally, the one thing I can taste right as I practice being in the moment is ginger. The slightly spicy, tangy ginger is a staple in my world. I cut a few slivers to chew throughout the day. Fresh ginger is considered an anti-inflammatory, and it tastes good to me. I even bruise a knob of ginger and put it in my water overnight for flavor. A simple act worth trying.
Practicing this method will help in being present in the moment. How do you practice being here..present at this very moment? Let’s continue to stay in touch as social distancing has been rescribed for each of us.
Time to sow more seeds in this period of social distancing.
Teri, Cottage In The Courtby