So you want to live in the moment, do you? That seems to be what everybody is talking about these days (including me!). But you may be wondering how the heck you’re supposed to do it amidst the 50 million things on your to-do list. In a spirit of simplification, I am proposing that you adopt the “4 A’s” and release the “4 R’s.” These principles taken together will assist you with being more present for yourself, within your relationships, and in all aspects of your life. Simple yet complex, integrating these principles may take some time and, as usual, practice. The beauty in life’s mystery is that you actually need both parts in order to appreciate and understand the big picture. Just as there is Yin/Yang in Chinese medicine to describe opposing forces that create the whole, so must you walk through the darkness within yourself to appreciate the light. You must acknowledge your shadows in order to thrive in wholeness. And in order to fully adopt the 4 A’s, you must first release the “4 R’s.” Below I explain each step.
In order to adopt awareness, you must release repression. Repression is an unconscious defense mechanism that protects you from age-inappropriate, overwhelming experiences. Repression has occurred when you have times in your life that you cannot remember, experiences that you cannot recall, and relates to the phrase “ignorance is bliss.” You may have someone in your life whom you believe just does not know any better. They don’t mean to keep hurting you, but they aren’t in touch with the way they behave and interact. This is usually a clue that some part of them is repressed. Awareness is the process by which unconscious repressed material, behavior, soul parts, pre-verbal and/or traumatic experiences are brought to the surface and you are able to acknowledge and recognize these parts of yourself. From a place of awareness, you are able to fully inhabit your self-created reality. Now you are wide awake. By definition it is very difficult to be asleep or unconscious and be in the present moment. It is very easy to sleep in the past or dream into the future. Awareness provides a conscious, eyes-open place where you can truly see who you are, what your life has become, and what you want for yourself.
Once you are aware of who you are and what you do (and if your lucky, why you do what you do), you are in a position to accept your life as is. You can fully embrace reality as it is presented to you in any given moment and you come into a place of acceptance. In order to adopt acceptance, however, you must release refusal. What I mean by refusal is that place of denial where you do not want to see what is. For example, you begin to have an awareness that your partner is not fully committed to your relationship. But you continue to convince yourself through excuses that there are other reasons for his/her behavior. You refuse to see the truth here and to acknowledge your own truth that this behavior is not working for you. Once you stop refusing what is in the moment, there is a window of opportunity to accept what is. That automatically puts you into the present moment. Accepting the present moment allows you to be much more empowered than when you use excess energy to refuse or deny it.
Being aware and accepting what is puts you in a very powerful position to take action. In order to take action, you must release re-action and re-activity. When you exist in re-action and re-activity, your world is dependent on the actions of others. You are less empowered and less in the moment because you are always evaluating what someone else has done to you, or even what Life has done or presented to you. This sets you up to be the victim. To step into your own power and claim the moment that is yours to claim, you must make a decision and take action. Decide what YOU are going to do. No longer waiting on what someone else is going to do or participating in a power struggle. As the old Nike phrase goes, JUST DO IT. Send that email, make that phone call, make that change, take that leap. Honor yourself and what you know to be true now that you are aware and in acceptance. Any action that you take needs to be rooted in truth and integrity. And remember, you can always “course correct.” We cannot predict the future and no moment freezes in time. The most damaging course is the one where you do nothing and stay stuck or continue to stay in re-action and re-activity allowing others to set the course for you and then blame them for your experience. Grab a hold of yourself now and take a step… each step that you take creates your path, which is completely yours to travel. Walking in your own power, you are now free.
So, once you see who and where you are, accept what is, and make a decision to act, an opportunity arises to allow what comes to you from that place. Notice what shows up in your life. And realize that it does not always show up in a positive form. Yet, resisting what comes to you keeps you from learning whatever said experience/person/challenge is here to teach you. In order to adopt the principle of allowing, you must release resistance. When you resist what is, you are not able to see the lessons in front of you. Life is always more tolerable when you are heading downstream. So why do so many of us so often find ourselves struggling to paddle against the current of Life? Many times Life does not present your most precious learning opportunities in pretty packages. Many times they are presented as a huge, crappy, complicated, confusing mess. So, for just this one, try allowing yourself to go with the flow, literally. You will know you have done it because you will instantly feel relief. Then you are able to gain an awareness, come into acceptance, decide to take action, and then allow what is to happen. And the cycle begins all over again. In that cycle of presence and freedom, you may find that you breathe a bit easier, you notice all the colors around you, and you realize that you have learned life’s greatest lesson: to love you!
Adopt these 4 A’s and release the 4 R’s to create consciousness, peace, and presence in your life. Repeat the principles moment by moment and give yourself permission to just BE YOU. Don’t forget to let me know how it goes along the way and remember that I’m always here if you need some extra support or guidance. I look forward to hearing from you!