WHAT DO YOU LOOK FORWARD TO TODAY?
I discovered something interesting this morning.
My wife asked me: "What do you look forward to today?" This innocent question ultimately gifted me an experience of growth. I discovered that nowadays this question feels confrontational to me; it is akin to a tornado heading my way.
Interestingly, because of, as opposed to in-spite-of, my practices of mindfulness, the question: "What do you look forward to..." holds equal value to its opposite: "What don't you look forward to..."
The question now registers as: 'What do I, or don't I, look forward to in a period of time that does not yet exist'.
Having vigilantly practiced, and continue to practice, remaining in the present moment, regardless as to whether it is comfortable or uncomfortable, my inner-warning system is activated whenever I am being invited to step outside that realm.
This present moment may be comfortable or uncomfortable, pleasant or unpleasant; either way I am right-here-now. 'Escaping' toward a moment of time in the past or future no longer makes sense to me. I have been practicing to be present (in this moment) to such an extent that when I am invited to step out of it, a part of me hits the warning button. My Higher Self whispers: "Don't go back to the old ways of 'being' in the present with a mind that is 'living' in the future or past". "That old habitual behavior did not serve you".
The present is always 'gifting' us; and it will continue to gift us for as long as we remain conscious (awake) of being in it.
The experience I was gifted in that present moment (this morning) was the opportunity to see what I do when confronted with discomfort. Perhaps I didn't handle the moment as skillfully as I could have? Perhaps my attempt to explain what I was experiencing fell short? Being mindful (toward others) while practicing to be mindful (within the Self) takes practice. I am still an aspirant of mindfulness (even though I teach it), which constantly offers me opportunities for growth. We do the best we can with the tools we have available at the time. This is why mindfulness is called a 'practice'. We continually rise to the next-best-version of ourselves.
To me, the message remains the same: "What do you look forward toward; and what don't you look forward toward, are both equal in value. Both are subject to desire and aversion, which are the creators of suffering. Whereas being fully present (in each moment), regardless of the level of comfort or discomfort, is the pathway to the cessation of suffering.
I shall continue to accept the 'isness' of each moment, and be grateful for the 'gifts' of comfort and discomfort that arise within these moments. I am by no means perfect, I am a work in progress; and I am very grateful to be with a partner in life who stands by my side as I practice the practices of mindfulness (she truly loves me for who I am).