The Art Of Being Present

What does showing up really mean? We are defining it as being present. Being physically, emotionally, and spiritually in the moment. Not an easy task.

It’s true that the definition can be much broader—showing up in a relationship differs from showing up to work or showing up to your career calling. We’ve chosen three. If you break it down, physical, mental, and spiritual presence are all required to fully show up to your life.

Showing Up Physically

As distractions have become pervasive, showing up has grown more difficult. What once was a simple task of sitting and watching a movie with your partner, or going to dinner with friends, can now be easily fraught with distractions. How many times have you sat at a restaurant with all the best intentions in the world and looked up only to find both you and your partner on your cell phone? The phone has become the third wheel to any situation. Physically showing up used to be easy, and now, it’s not. Work, school, relationships, life—even relaxation, all wreak with massive distractions. The physical act of eye contact is almost a thing of the past. You’re physically there, but not quite.

What about showing up period? Are you the type of person who says you will be somewhere and then doesn’t show up? Or runs 2 hours late? Presenting yourself as someone who is reliable and accountable is crucial to being present. Show up on time. Stop being a flake.

Make time to spend time together. How many friends do you have nearby that you never see, but perhaps communicate with all the time? The emotional connection of texting or emailing has subbed for the physical connection of getting together. It’s much easier to text instead of going out of your way to make plans. Get the calendar out and start setting some dates.

The same goes for business. Yes, the internet is an excellent resource to create commerce outside the office, but don’t underestimate the value of getting together as a team, in person.

Physically showing up is half the battle. Yes, this is true for the gym, but not enough to maintain healthy relationships, get your work done, or elevate your fitness level. Eyes on the phone don’t count for physically being anywhere, except cyberspace. Let’s challenge ourselves this year to get there, on time, eyes and ears ready to do the work.

Showing Up Mentally

Mentally showing up means being focused. This doesn’t mean that you can’t bring some of your own baggage along to enhance the conversation, but when it comes to properly showing up, you must listen, you must be focused, and you must make a conscious effort to rid yourself of distractions.

If you’re with a friend or partner, don’t let your mind wander, and try not to anticipate your response before the other person even stops talking. If you’re working, work. Be effective, focused, and get it done. No one likes to be around someone who complains all the time and never completes the task.

We all get distracted sometimes—the rabbit hole is just a step away, but the mental practice of staying focused is essential to showing up for your life in all areas.

Showing Up Spiritually

Spiritually showing up is the most difficult. It comes from stepping out of mental and physical space and opening up something much bigger. The space in between. To encourage our souls to access something, and go beyond the boundaries we are forever setting for ourselves.

Meditation as it is formally prescribed is not the only way to show up spiritually.

Be honest. Be open. Be clear.  Be vulnerable. Let go.

We are only capable of fully showing up to our lives with complete openness and non attachment. Fulfillment can’t be forced. We must listen to the messages of the universe in order to extend beyond what we mentally and physically think we need.

With a new year in front of us, we resolve to be more present, more in the moment, and to make the effort to show up more fully in all areas of our lives.

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