It is pretty hard to feel content in a world that is consistently offering you the “next best thing”. I mean, how can your possibly pay attention to the now when you can't wait for the future to arrive?
Because it will be better, right? It will be bigger, faster, more efficient, more effective, more fulfilling and…perfect, somehow.
But how reliable is relying on the future? And what evidence do we have that it will bring a better life than we have now?
The only thing we can be certain of is the now; this moment you're experiencing as you read this post. And as for the evidence of a better future, well if you've yet to experience a moment that truly fulfilled you, even though you have been promised it would a thousand times – by yourself and others, then the likelihood of some distant moment in the future fulfilling your insatiable desires is pretty slim, don't you think?
The reality is that we spend far too much time mulling over the past and anticipating the future. We look to the future for prosperity and, when it lets us down, we look romantically to the past at the way things once were.
The mind is always trying to take us some place else, to somewhere better, a place we have convinced ourselves will make everything worthwhile, a place where we feel content and fully realise our purpose and place in the world.
But that place doesn't exist in the future.
In actuality, all that transpires is disappointment. We become increasingly impatient with life as it fails to deliver the perfect picture of happiness advertised to us through a plethora of marketing mediums on a daily basis.
The more we own and achieve the bigger the discontentment grows as the gap becomes impossible to fill. We become unhappier and more stressed, more self-centered and judgemental, more anxious and sleepless, more disenchanted with the world. This impacts negatively on our relationships with others, and on our ability to connect with the true nature of things.
If I had a dime for every time I heard someone say, “Things will be better when I….,” “I'll be happier when I…”
- When you move house again?
- When you get a higher-paying job?
- When the kids go off to college?
- When you finally take that holiday?
- When you get a bigger car?
- When you achieve what your parents expected of you?
- When you meet Mr/Mrs right?
- When you retire with that pension you've been slaving to accumulate?
This perpetual cycle of desiring to get to some moment other than the one that's in our presence is causing us mental suffering. We live in the realm of our imagination, a delusion reliant on the prospect that happiness is just one more purchase, one more action or goal away.
But what if we just stop for a moment? What if we could find absolute contentment in just being here right now?
I assure you that if you let go of the grasping for just a moment, you'll see just how perfect this moment is and how wonderfully complete you feel.
Because no matter what is going on in your life right now and how you perceive it, this is how it was meant to be in this moment.
Every moment is part of the interdependent transience of life. Mother Nature doesn't use a clock. There is no time, only a sequence of perfect moments that form our existence. And they can be nothing more than moments, because one only ever exists at any given time.
And if you need any more motivation to free yourself from the cage of contemplation over what the future might bring, remember that one day there will not be another moment to ponder. The cold, hard reality is that you'll die before that perfect moment you envision ever arrives.
Every moment we wish away, ignore or dismiss as not good enough, we never get back. Conversely, every moment is ours to seize and appreciate, to love ourselves, others and this amazing world.
Don't ignore the potential for unconditional joy and fulfilment that can be found in your life right this moment. The way you engage with this moment will have a direct effect on the next, subsequently affecting the level of opportunity and prosperity that opens up in your life.
So today, bring your mind home. Stop longing for something better to happen, to have more than you own or to be someone else, somewhere else.
There is no perfect moment to come. There will never be a more perfect moment that this one. Because this moment is absolutely as it is supposed to be.
There is no “I'll be happy when…” moment that will fill that longing for self-actualisation deep in the pit of your stomach. And you know this to be true because every time you get to that new product, have that new partner, reach that new goal, it isn't long before you the emptiness creeps up on you again to let you know that you still don't have that sense of achievement and contentment you were seeking. And so you set a new target, and the cycle continues….
Your happiness doesn't reside in the future, and it hasn't passed you by, either. It's right here. Step into this most beautiful moment and connect with your existence. Life is happening right now. Don't miss out.