Racing to get somewhere? I know the feeling.
We live in a time when we all seem to be racing to get somewhere. Students are trying to get high grades, be great in sports, play a musical instrument, learn a language, and achieve as much as they can as they are racing to get into college. College and graduate students are racing to get their degrees, and then racing to find jobs. And professionals are racing to arrive at the next level of their careers.
No wonder we find it hard to keep track of where we are and what we are doing.
People with ADHD (Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder), and those who simply have Attention Deficit Trait, or attention issues, are often easily distracted—not able to pay attention to any one thing for any length of time, jumping from one thing to the next. Pressure makes it worse.
With so much going on, how can we do everything we need to do and not get distracted? One simple method that can make a world of difference is to remember to come back to the body, back to the breath at any time, at any moment of the day. The body and the breath are where we live. These are our anchors. They keep us grounded, even as we move forward—especially as we move forward.
Just remember this one phrase: back to the body, back to the breath. Wherever you are, whatever you are doing, take a few deep breaths. Feel your feet on the floor. Feel the whole of your body. Make your out breath long.
As you breathe in, notice any places in your body that are tense or constricted. As you breathe out, let go with a soft “hah.”
Now return to what you were doing.
By pausing, we allow ourselves to refocus, to pay attention, and to give our full awareness to what is happening now.
Remembering where we are right now and focusing on the one step we are taking, we gain more satisfaction, do a better job, and at the same time move steadily towards our goals.
I use this every day, and it helps me to gain more calm, clarity, and focus.
“Mindfulness isn’t difficult, we just need to remember to do it.”
― Sharon Salzberg, Real Happiness: The Power of Meditation