A while ago we were curled up in our usual bedtime routine of letting the day go and Jay came across a video. It was a monk quoting Lao Tzu and buddhist philosophy.
This is what he had to say:
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.
As a student of life I love things that make me pause and give me new tools to work with. This concept struck me and I’ve found myself ruminating on it ever since.
How simple and yet beautiful and awakening. I have worked through depression at times throughout my life. I’m sure most of us have, regardless as to whether it’s been diagnosed or not. I’ve also worked with anxiety and fears of the unknown. The possibilities scaring me into inaction.
Both situations can hold me in my tracks and impair my ability to move forward which is why I try to be focused on the beauty and opportunities of the here and now.
This idea felt like a bright light of understanding shining into my heart and mind. It’s a new understanding to apply in my daily life along with all of my other tools.
If I’m anxious I can stop and ask myself what’s up? What thing am I worrying about which is yet to happen and I can do nothing about? Is there anything I can do to support and soothe my fears? Perhaps playing through the possible scenarios and how I could react may ease the emotions I’m experiencing.
On the other end, I may be ruminating on a past issue. Maybe it’s an argument with a loved one, or unmet expectations. How about financial remorse or an unkind comment made years ago and now realize how damaging and hurtful it was.
Staring at the past and how we’ve fallen short of our own expectations and hops can bring about depression and self-loathing.
I fully see how following these teachings can be a beautiful guide to being in the present moment. And I love using it in my day to day.
I also feel a bit rebellious towards the concept and I’m excited to explain.
There are two sides to this idea.
The one is where you ruminate on the past and find pain and depression in the experience.The other side is where you look to the past for heartfelt memories and growth in the future. Knowing the challenges you’ve overcome inspire and strengthen you for the challenges you have yet to face.
On one hand you look to the future to see fear and anxiety of things to come. The other hand has you looking to the future excited about the plans you’ve made and opportunities to come
Don’t get me wrong, I know there are different types of anxiety and depression. I fully support and encourage those who need additional assistance to find even ground. I, myself, have reached out for that support and been grateful for the resulting strength I found.
I’m an advocate for living in the here and now.
See the beauty around you. Take in the positive and wonderful things you have the opportunity to experience. Create moments of joy for yourself and, if you feel like it, share them with someone else.
This life is a gift. Opposition helps us learn and grow.
Seize the moment, Own your Shit, and be the most authentic beautiful YOU you can be.
Let’s create the now that will feed into an amazing tomorrow.