It is no secret that human beings are chronic worriers. People who have a hard time letting go of the past worry a lot and overthink all the things they’ve done. People who focus too much on the future spend an incredible amount of time planning ahead and worrying over all the hypothetical details of what could go wrong. It makes them sacrifice their present happiness.
None of us have control over the past and we can’t predict the future.
So, try focusing on the present in the following ways:
- Jump right into the things you intend to do on any given day without thinking of all the things that could go wrong. Don’t base the possible outcome on something that happened before.
- Don’t worry about instantaneous perfection or how others might perceive you. Recognize that in the moment, all that matters is keeping the momentum going.
- Be incredibly grateful for where you are now, even when it’s not what you expected in the past.
- Accept the past for what it is. Not because you’ve repressed your memories, but because you’ve allowed yourself to feel what you feel and spend conscious effort in reflecting on certain events. In that way, you allow yourself to grow.
- Don’t accuse or blame others for your past misfortunes. Instead, recognize that an argument is ineffective when it brings up past events over and over again. Especially when it’s used to attack someone’s character or deficiencies.
- Don’t carry the burden of who you were before and the expectations that come with it. Go about your days with less time spent on overthinking your decisions and wondering if anything will go wrong because this way you’ll be able to get more done
- Plan for the future in a healthy way. Know the importance of having a few major goals that will help you thrive. But don’t obsess over having every little detail planned out or get upset with how much more work you still need to do. Instead, realize that while having an idea is helpful for preparation, you ultimately cannot have the final say in how the future will turn out. You simply have to embrace those uncertainties.
- Love who you are and practice self-care by giving yourself enough beautiful moments to enjoy on any given day.
If you continue to practice these 8 steps, you’ll begin to experience the great things that happen when you live in the present.
Even when the past has its firm grip on you, there’s nothing beneficial about fearing your future based on what you did wrong in the past. There is always a chance for change in the present. To start over. To be able to see things for what they are instead of through a lens of dark and unresolved emotions. There’s nothing more freeing than having the ability to pursue anything without any guilt or the past holding you back.
Image credit by Ben White