I fluctuate between wanting the present moment to be different than it is, and appreciating it exactly as it is, with all it brings. I fluctuate between wanting to be better and appreciating myself just as I am.
My default mode seems to be the wanting one. I have this unending desire to be a better man. I want to be a kinder, gentler, more generous, patient, and peaceful human being, and this desire constantly propels me to do more, read more, study more, meditate more, reflect more, and write more. And because I believe this pursuit to be a worthy and noble one — and one that can be reached through work — I keep doing the things I believe will bring me closer to the desirable goal.
But, unfortunately, while in the middle of doing all these things, I constantly forget to remind myself that this pursuit to be better has no end, because no matter where I may be, improvement is always possible. And since I am pursuing a target that is constantly moving — and is always ahead of me — this unending struggle can be exhausting! So I have to pause and ask myself, “Do I really need to be more? Do I really need to do more? Can’t I find contentment with myself as I am? Am I not enough already? What am I chasing?” I need to remind myself that no matter how noble the goal may be, a chase is always a chase, and every pursuit is a struggle.
Those times when I am able to switch from the wanting mode to the appreciative mode, I realize that everything is fine, and that I don’t need to be any different; I don’t need to be more, or do more. I realize that expressing my uniqueness — which is revealed through living with authenticity — is the best thing I can do, the best contribution I can give to the world. But to get out of the wanting mode in order to live more in the appreciative mode, I need to practice. I need to remember to live mindfully, and as the saying goes, “It is not difficult to be mindful. What’s difficult is to remember to be mindful!” Practice is needed. I have to remind myself to pay attention to the here-now, and appreciate whatever the present moment may bring. I have to remind myself to follow my bliss and find joy in all that I do.
I notice a lack of balance: I spend too much time striving, and not enough time appreciating. I spend too much time demanding a lot from myself, and not enough time pampering myself.
Enough with all the striving! Time to switch modes! I am enjoying the present moment, this moment, right here, right now, in all its beauty.
My body is healthy. My mind is clear. My heart is joyful. And my soul is serene.
Piero Falci is an author and educator who believes that the inner work that leads to personal awakening and transformation is indispensable to create a wholesome world. He is an explorer of the mysteries of life who loves to observe, reflect, and write, and who not only strives to live a life that matters, but also hopes to inspire others to do the same. He is a promoter of peace who believes in advancing the idea that Heaven is here if we want it to be. He teaches mindfulness meditation, mindful living, and the official Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction (MBSR) program as taught at the Center for Mindfulness in Medicine, Healthcare, and Society of the University of Massachusetts Medical School. He organizes Silent Peace Walks.
Take a look at these books at the Peaceful Ways online store
– “Peaceful Ways – The Power of Making Your Wishes Come True”
– “Pay Attention! Be Alert! Discovering Your Route to Happiness”
– “Silent Peace Walk”