Be present. It means not mulling over things that have already happened or becoming too anxious about the future. Rather, it means living fully in the present, the here and now. It means learning from the past and creating a future. The book The Present, another favorite of mine, says that the past present and future are a tripod - you need to balance each in your life in order to capture the best image. It means experiencing everything fully and not let other things in your life preoccupy/distract you from what you're currently experiencing.
I think that can be tough in today's world. With technology, you can immediately get distracted with a text, or phone, or email and forget about what you're actually dealing with. We can be demanded by too many people and obligations, and tugged in a million directions. And amidst all of that haste, what happens if we take a moment to actually enjoy the gift of the present?
The other day, I went on the best run I've been on since I arrived in Santa Cruz. There are these paths by our campus, and last weekend on a long walk there, and really liked it. But I wasn't sure if it was really run-able. I mean, if I were a trail runner, totally. But I'm not. But, shouldn't I take the road less traveled?
Why not! It turned into an 8 mile run that was just perfect. Lots of trees, which meant lots of shade, and lots of hills. And so beautiful. I couldn't stop looking around. Sometimes, when I know a running route really well, I just zone and don't even pay attention to the landscape. Not here. I was taking it all in, breathing the cool air, and just loving it. I wasn't thinking about work (we just ended our first session of our camp), what I needed to do when I got back, or anything that could've detracted me from the run.
When I came back, I was in heaven. So happy how well the run went and at the same time, ready to get back to work too. Amazing how well it served as a recharger and refresher. It was truly a gift, that of the run and the present.
I won't say I'm always good about living in the present, but I do know how much of a gift it is.