Distracting ourselves from presence

The Daisy Patch Blog - Distracting ourselves from presence

I’ve been wanting to write something about how I’m feeling about gratitude right now in my life. I’m feeling it in so many ways. I’m living and breathing it. Every moment to me feels filled with joy and appreciation. I so love that I am in Australia spending time with the people I most love. I’m so grateful I’m staring at blue skies and feeling the crisp heat of the sun on my skin. I’m so grateful I feel my surroundings are familiar and comfortable. I’m so grateful I’m just ‘being’ feeling, experiencing a short window of my family’s lives. So when I opened up a draft file on my computer after typing a few sentences and deleting them multiple times, it heartened my to see even more gratitude jumping out at me:

Such gratitude for making my yoga class today. I looked up at the clock at 12:02pm and there was this moment when I said, nah I can’t make it I’ll just keep going with what I’m doing. And yet there was this deeper promise I’d made to myself that right now, today, this week, this hour, I really need my rituals. My zen. My me time. So in the second split second I hopped to it and was lying on the mat by 12:30pm…mmm…bliss.

You see, there are so many moments in our lives when gratitude may not feel within reach, where it may feel so challenging to keep going, to make yourself do that thing that feels so hard right now. Yet the moment you reach into noticing where you are, appreciating that moment, is the same time the intensity dissipates.

There was this beautiful moment during that yoga class when my teacher was describing ‘challenge’ and our resistance to it. She said when we’re up against a challenge of sorts quite often what we’ll do is immediately look for the ‘distraction’. In yoga this may mean the adjustment, the fiddling with our clothes, or the breaking of the position, or our mind will become busy and we’ll float off into our ‘work’ mode and stop being fully present. I feel this is exactly what happens in our daily lives. The moment we are presented with a challenge – no matter what the level of this challenge – our in built, knee jerk reaction is to look for distraction. For some of us this shows up as procrastination of the things in our life super important to us, or perhaps it’s a certain level of ‘busy’ we just ‘must’ sustain in order to feel valued.

I can certainly relate to this sense of ‘busy’ when I’m back in Australia. I travel lots. My family is spread across multiple cities and I want to be with them all, so I tend to pack a lot in. And yet for me this feels completely rational. It’s when I’m moving through the packed diary that I notice myself at times wanting to run away with it… the plans… the busy.

I’ve been practicing this trip being so conscious about those thoughts that pop into my head. The moment I feel myself switching into planning and projecting I’ve been telling myself to come back to the moment “be present”, “this is what you’re here for”, “be HERE”. And I have. I’ve stopped fiddling so much. I’ve dropped my shoulders into the moments however and whatever they are I’m in gratitude. How incredible our lives are when we allow ourselves to pause long enough to notice.


Who are you most grateful for in your life right now? Tell them! And share this post with them so they too can bring more presence and gratitude into their lives.