So many people are obsessed with either the future or past. Why not now? Now is the only time we can perceive. What good does it do to stay stuck in the past, worrying about missed opportunities or guilt about something you did? We can't travel back in time. Why waste time in the now, thinking about the past? I'm not saying the past doesn't have any relevance, but it shouldn't be something we are stuck in. More like a learning tool of what not to do in the future or in the now. But don't get stuck in the future either.
It's good to plan for the future, but not to the extent that it is the main focus of your life. If the future is all you think about, the now, becomes an enemy or a means to an end. People obsessed with the future are in a hurry to do anything and everything. They drive fast, can't stand to sit still, have trouble sleeping at night. Their main focus is to bring the future to the past, ignoring the now or even hating it. The future isn't written, we are not promised a tomorrow. It's okay to plan for the future, just don't live in it. Stop and look at what is going on around you, the people, places and things. Enjoy what is going on in the now, while waiting on the future to come.
It's okay to be content.
One dictionary defines contentment as “the state of being mentally or emotionally satisfied with things as they are.” Today, it is rare that we find anyone who is truly content with their life. The Bible says a lot about contentment; being satisfied with what we have, who we are, and where we’re going. Jesus said, “Therefore I tell you, do not worry about your life, what you will eat or drink; or about your body, what you will wear. Is not life more important than food, and the body more important than clothes?” (Matthew 6:25).
Jesus makes a good point here. Life is what you make of it. If you make life hard, it will be hard. I noticed young people are more mentally depressed than when I was young. I can't help think the social media they follow contributes to it. The way social media algorithms work, as you like or watch the entirety of a video, or follow certain social media influencers, it pushes media that appeals to you. If you are a person with a victim mentality, then you will like and agree with victim mentality type influencers. Most victim minded people will stay in the past, all they can think of are the failures or events which happened to them that are not their fault, and how life is not fair. They can't accept the reality that is. The fact is: life is not fair. It will never be fair. People who can accept the "cards" life has dealt them will be happier. The mindset of these kinds of people is proactive, not reactive. If I make a mistake that changes the course of my life, instead of dwelling on the mistake I can't change, I figure out a way to move forward from there, turn the experience into a positive, and better my situation. To fail is to stop trying. The minute you stop, all opportunities go away. This is why negative people tend not to go far in life. They talk themselves out of the opportunity they could have had, by telling themselves they can't do it. Or worse, make up a story in their mind why it is impossible to happen. So they don't try. Positive people are more successful in life, because no matter what happens to them, they take the bad, find the silver lining, turn it into a positive, and try and try again. Positive people fall in the trap of living in the future instead of living in now.
What does it mean to live for now? For me, it means doing the best I can on whatever task is in front of me. If the task is somewhat superficial or something I don't care for, like driving, I try to accept it for what it is and do it to the best of my ability, without having a negative feeling attached to it. Living in the now is being present in everything I'm doing, people I'm with, etc. I have deleted social media, all it does is pass the time. I don't want to wake up one day and realize I have wasted my life watching videos which add no value to my life.
Social media like Tik Tok has such a negative effect on your mind. Flipping from video to video without even finishing them, programs the mind to lose the ability to stay focused. The attention span vanishes. (see sciencetimes.com) It affects your ability to critically think, ability to study or even read a book. Many people reach for their phones when there is nothing to do or they are bored. Before there were smart phones, people would be creative about what to do. When I was young, I liked to draw, paint or read a book, when I was bored. I would ride my bike around the neighborhood and visit my friends.
There are a few good books on the subject, "A new earth". This book will give me a different way to look at how I do life. It made me acutely aware of what I do. For those that are career oriented, "Today Matters".
Author: Brent LuyetShare