This year is all about self-reflection and enlightenment, not an easy task especially for one like you. You’re always so focused on the future, what lies ahead, but I worry that you’ll miss the great moments along the way. You need to live in the moment, in the “now,” to make sure you get the most out of life.
By three methods we may learn wisdom: First, by reflection, which is noblest; Second, by imitation, which is easiest; and third by experience, which is the bitterest. ~ Confucius
Every year, you come up with a detailed list of things you’d like to accomplish (like reading one book per month or writing one poem per month, daily exercise, etc.). Sometimes you succeed at your goals and other times you don’t. You understand that trying is important, and that’s good.
Now it’s time to focus not on the future and where you'd like to be. Now is the time to focus on the moment, on the journey itself. The new year, 2012, is just beginning, and I know you’re happy to start a new year. 2011 was rough, and for weeks now, you’ve been anxiously awaiting a new start. However, that’s part of the problem.
You’re always looking ahead, never focusing on the now. I’m afraid you’ll spend your entire life looking for the next moment and not appreciating the one you’re in right now. So for this upcoming year, I’d like you to focus on yourself in the moment. To do this, yes, you will have a list of daily and weekly goals (and you’ll likely come up with lists along the way), but overall I want you to emphasize reflection, awareness and mindfulness.
I want you to focus on each moment as you live it. It’s not possible to never look to the future or even to examine each moment as it is lived, and that’s why you have a short list of objectives to maintain throughout the year. They are designed to reflect and take a look at your life as you are living it.
I know you believe that the point of life is to experience happiness and fulfillment, and you also believe that can’t be achieved if you’re always looking to the future and what is coming next. This is a long journey that will (hopefully) last far longer than the coming year.
Do not dwell in the past, do not dream of the future, concentrate the mind on the present moment. ~ Buddha
You have goals for the upcoming year. The simple goal of, "Live in the present," is easier said than done, so you will have a list of goals to focus on throughout the year. You can't not have goals because that's the type of person you are, but to help you keep in the present while completing these goals, you'll take the following actions with each one:
Daily meditation/yoga - Focus on the present, be mindful of your feelings and emotions.
Daily photography - Capture the moment and beauty which surrounds you.
Weekly journalling - Write about your feelings and emotions.
Walk/Run 10 miles per week - Meditate while running. It's hard to think much about the future while running, so it's a great exercise for being mindful!
Maintain Exercise/Nutrition Log - Keep track of fitness and nutrition.
Write 365 reviews - Reviewing is a great activity to strengthen your own writing and to give to others
Enter 12 contests/activities - Participating in community activities connects you to the world in which you live.
Read 52 novels - Reading requires focus and concentration on the moment.
Write 52 product reviews - Product reviews ensure that you're analyzing and thinking about what you're reading.
Ultimate Goal: Be at peace with the world and with yourself. Stop worrying so much and enjoy your life. Strict goals and requirements may seem counter-intuitive to "stop worrying and enjoy your life," but in the end, it's helpful. It will help you stop and reflect on moments as they pass, which will lead to further enrichment and enjoyment of your life.
I wish you a happy new year. Make the best of your life; you only get one.
Your intent is for the future, but your attention is in the present. ~ Deepak Chopra
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