As this holiday season comes into full bloom, with only four days left until Christmas and the inevitable aftermath of torn wrapping paper and dirty dinner dishes, I’d like to take a moment to discuss the best Christmas “present” you can give yourself. That present is being present – present in the moment with full attention and intention, not living with an eye on the past or looking to the future. It means living fully in the current moment – whether that moment is with your family, friends, legal nurse consulting business or attorney-clients.
As many of you already know, I have a morning tradition of waking up to two cups of healthy green tea. With the first cup, I take time to enrich my soul, set my intention for the day and, more importantly, give myself the present of starting the day by being present. This practice helps to prepare me for the upcoming frenzy and, while it doesn’t guarantee my day will be stress-free, it does guarantee that I’m better equipped to deal with the madness.
So buy yourself or your loved ones a Christmas gift – the present of being present. Here are three different resources that can help give you, or your loved ones, the present of being present.
The first is A Course In Miracles by Dr. Helen Schucman, a text that has the power to change your daily practices of living, learning, loving and meditating through a series of lessons and exercises. It’s not an easy read and is one of the most challenging books I have ever read, but if your mind is open it can transform all your relationships, whether spiritual or physical.
Second is Five Good Minutes: 100 Morning Practices to Help You Stay Calm and Focused All Day Long by Jeffrey Brantley and Wendy Millstone. What I love about this resource is that while everyone may not be willing to get up early enough to have two cups of tea, anyone can find five minutes in their morning. This is a quick and easy way to train yourself to become present and start your day with calm.
My final recommendation is Start Where You Are: A Guide to Compassionate Living by Pema Chodron. I must admit I was first attracted to this book by the title, and being familiar with Pema’s other works, I didn’t hesitate to pick it up. It’s a great way to learn how to use meditation as a way of life, not just a practice.
Life is challenging enough without taking time for ourselves. Reading any one of these books won’t change your life immediately – think of them as seeds that will help you grow into all that you are meant to be. Give yourself the present of being present this Christmas and in the New Year.
Success Is Inside!
P.S. Comment and share your favorite technique for being present.