By focusing on life one day at a time, you’re living all the days of your life. You don’t let life pass you by when you’re consciously choosing to emphasize the present moment. Let’s make a pact to be truly alive in each breath that we take today, because all the peace and happiness in the world is available in this moment.
“Although time seems to fly by, it never travels faster than one day at a time. Each day is a new opportunity to live your life to the fullest.” – Dr. Steve Maraboli
The gift of presence
I place my attention on the present moment.
What you plant now, you will harvest later, but let’s leave later for later and let’s focus on the now for now. If you aren’t present now, then when?
Presence is one of the most valuable gifts you can give yourself or anyone else in your life. We often get so caught up in the future and consumed by the past that we can’t even see what’s right in front of us. Emphasize the present moment and be happy for it, because this moment is your life.
In the words of Thich Nhat Hanh, “If we are not fully ourselves, truly in the present moment, we miss everything.” This is the moment to cherish. This is the time to understand peace. This is the day to learn about your own happiness, not yesterday and not tomorrow.
If you’re truly in the present moment, you are at peace. There are no expectations, for that requires thought of the future. There are no judgments, for that requires memory of the past. There are no regrets, for regret is the product of the future wishing upon the past.
The gift of acceptance
No regrets thrive in this moment in time.
No judgments and no expectations can thrive either, if you’re really letting yourself be drawn to right here, right now. How could they exist? Try releasing the need to control everything so that you can enjoy life a little more. Try letting go of the need to be right or better, because all that’s doing is chaining you to misery.
This is another quote from Thich Nhat Hanh that I adore: “Letting go gives us freedom and freedom is the only condition for happiness.”
Judge another and you define yourself, not them. Pointing out flaws in another only resembles a disturbance in our own inner peace, and it thoroughly disrupts our happiness. As Brene Brown points out, “Imperfections are not inadequacies; they are reminders that we’re all in this together.” So, let’s observe without judgment–observe yourself, others, the situation, and your life… without judgment. This judgment-free observation, as Jiddu Krishnamurti said, is the highest form of human intelligence.
As we trade expectations for acceptance, serenity comes. As we give up the need to bring up past arguments, we get to appreciate the person as they are right now. When we let this moment naturally evolve, eliminating the words “could” and “should” from our present vocabulary, we free ourselves and others. We unleash the ties that keep us bound to any time other than this time.
Truly living and loving this moment means letting go of all the expectations of what it should or could be. It means full acceptance, even celebration of the moment as if you had welcomed it all along. Happiness is, indeed, as Mandy Hale suggests, “letting go of what you think your life is supposed to look like and celebrating it for everything that it is.”
When we let go of the life we expected to have, we can accept the life that is waiting for us. We can approach each of life’s moments with wonder. We can only do this one day at a time.
One day at a time…
I take this life one day at a time. In this way I am free.
When you’re in the moment, free from judgmental or anxious thoughts, you are free to love your life how it is. You’re free to enjoy what is right in front of you. You’re free to be happy. You’re able to harness the potential for peace that this day offers.
And sometimes, when everything seems to have gone wrong that can, remember that one breath at a time is an acceptable plan. Don’t allow the enormity of anything–your dreams, your fears, your journey–overwhelm you, for you can overcome it and you can rise above it. You can make it through any darkness and any discomfort, one day at a time.
Honor your life by honoring this one day. Take it one day at a time, day by day, and start living fully, on purpose.
In what way can you make the present moment a more prominent part of your life? In what small gesture can you release expectations and judgments? Are you willing to embrace all that your life is? Please share your thoughts, encouragement, wisdom, or experiences with me in the comments.
Share this post with someone you care about.
Plant yourself in this moment. Be alive in each breath. Release any premeditated judgments and expectations, and take today for what it is: one day.
Watercolor texture by FrostBo; lettering by Aim Happy.