The Prize is the Present

I teach people about mindfulness, I practice it every day. Naturally every day offers something new to learn, but some days (or in this case, some weeks) offer more of a “back to the drawing board-refresher course” opportunity.

If you follow me on social media, you may know that I hosted a live event last week to start promoting my new book, Reclaiming Muchness, which is going to be released in September.

I was really excited about it.

As you can imagine, hosting an event like this takes quite a bit of planning and work. Especially when you like things to be just right. As my mother would always say, “the devil is in the details.”

And I’m meticulous about the details.

Only… in the days leading up to my event, I got sick. Really sick. Can’t think straight, too weak to function sick. The stomach bug lasted days.

Feeling stressed out and depleted, my mind kept dragging me to the dark place. The voices there whispering that I was bound to fail.

I had to pull out every tool in my toolbox.

I meditated. I breathed. I reframed.

I rallied little by little – calculating the days and hours remaining – reconfiguring my to-do lists.

That’s when the tornado hit. Not a metaphorical tornado, an actual tornado. And, of course, the power went out.

By the time I was feeling better and the power was back on, there were a mere 21 hours left before my event (and I needed at least a few of those for sleeping).

There was no way that this was going to be what I pictured. The dark place loomed.

Meditate. Breathe. Reframe.

It helped, and something clicked.

What would happen if I spent the next 21 hours 100% in the present moment? I already had a list to keep me focused. I looked it over and pared it down to what could be accomplished in that amount of time.

I stuck to it.

I thought about only what was in front of me. When the shadows began to creep in, I focused on my breath for a few moments and then carried on. I got quite a bit done, the event was a success, and I’m happy about that.

But what I’m really happy about, what I’m really proud of, is that I enjoyed it. I enjoyed the prep, I enjoyed the set-up, I enjoyed the women.

After an absolutely awful week, after confronting the dark place, after almost giving up … I actually got to enjoy the thing I had been so excited about.

This Week’s Tip:

Find the present in the worst moments.

When the dark place looms, don’t despair. You’ve been here before. You’ve gotten out before.

  • Breathe

  • Meditate

  • Reframe

  • Get present

“The present moment is filled with joy and happiness. If you are attentive, you will see it.” -Thich Nhat Hanh