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More present in the future

Are you trying to will yourself into being more present?

People tend to explore mindfulness when they feel like they haven't been present enough in the past.

That's was motivated me. I hoped there was some trick I just needed to understand.    

Now I see mindfulness practice as attentional exercise that supports being more present in the future.

Can you will yourself into being physically stronger than you are right now? 

Have you ever been able to force yourself to relax when you’re feeling anxious? 

I don't think either of these things is possible.

But I know that it's possible to become so intimately familiar with real-time perceptions that you're able to focus on what's happening more and wrestle with it less. 

Attentional exercises develop attentional skills over time.

If you want to inhabit your life more fully right now, you need to have invested some time and energy before now. 

This isn't a new idea. The ancient Greek poet Archilochus observed, “We don't rise to the level of our expectations, we fall to the level of our training.”

Now is always the perfect time to exercise your attention.  

Here are a few resources to help you work toward feeling more present in the future. 

Let me know how I can help you set the stage for more robust attentional fitness in 2018. 
 
From first-time director Greta Gerwig's Fresh Air conversation
about her film Lady Bird
 


Recent blog posts

  • Airport Insecurity

    Flying provides a steady stream of frustrations: the crowded isolation of DIY check-in, the sock-footed walk on eggshells through TSA, the hypervigilant tracking of an elusive ETA.

    All the inevitable discomforts of air travel make it a fertile attentional fitness opportunity. I’ve been developing a strategy that transforms the situation from hell into heaven. Okay, maybe more like a really productive purgatory.

  • If These Clouds Could Talk

    What does it mean to let our thoughts drift by like clouds?

    Shifting our awareness from what our thoughts mean to how they fluctuate is an attentional exercise that develops liberating abilities over time. 

    Observing the movement of clouds can provide a glimpse into how we can relate to mental activity more objectively, but it oversimplifies things when the analogy is taken too literally.

  • The Sacred Stays Sacred

    I took this photo with a disposable camera – after accidentally frying the digital one I'd brought on the first day of the trip – and it's one of my all-time favorite shots. It's a reminder to me that holiness and human imperfection are inseparably tangled up together.
     
  • Total Eclipse of Internal Interference

    The real magic happens when we become intimately familiar with the moment-by-moment experience of being alive. Instead of trying to force complete experiences to happen. I focus on setting the stage for them to happen by exercising my attention. 

    When remembering to notice that we're alive becomes a habit, we begin to erode the internal friction that obscures our view of the richness we're swimming in every day.
     
  • Naked and Aware: Bare Attention in the Shower

    There are many obstacles to establishing a consistent mindfulness routine. Three big ones are finding time to practice, being distracted by thoughts, and feeling bored.

    I discovered an exercise that obliterates all three simultaneously, but I’m pretty sure you’re going to hate the idea of it.

    As with any good attention exercise, it leverages an ordinary activity as an opportunity to build capacities that for responding more effectively to the challenges of ordinary life.

Check out Shinzen Young's monthly Home Practice Program and weekly Life Practice Program.

Keep in touch between newsletters: Take care, 

Daron

Copyright © 2017 Attentional Fitness Training, All rights reserved.


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