One of the things I’m amazed by is.. our abundance of, yet lack of presence.
How can we be available to a vast number of people at the same time, potentially millions around the globe, and still be unavailable to the one sitting next to us?
I am with someone; they are less than 3 feet away from me. We are talking. Eating. Watching a movie. But they aren’t present. Not to me. Every now and then (or sometimes all the time), they’ll be checking their phones, or ipad, or some other device.
I understand everyone’s different. It doesn’t matter to everyone.
But to me – it feels like they’re not present.
They’re choosing to read, like, comment on, or post something about something or someone, instead of postponing it until later on, when they’re alone anyways.
Choosing to be present at some level with everyone else in the world, means choosing to not be as fully present to the ones closer to you.
In our day and age we tend to think we can be known by and know everyone, and be everywhere.
I don’t think so. Some people are said to be good at multi-tasking. But really, we’re not made to multi-task. If you multi-task really well you simply shift your focus from one task to another, and then back again, really fast. But it doesn’t do you much good in the long run. Especially not when it comes to relationships.
Still though, if I want to have a conversation with you, I’d rather you not use your multi-tasking skills on me. I do not want you to shift your focus every 30 seconds, although that’s very impressive.
Actually, I’d be more impressed with someone who can give me, or anyone, their undivided attention for more than five minutes.
It might feel like a lot of work to shut out everything else and be fully present for one person at a time. Actually, it usually is a lot of work. But your hard work will give back a hundred-fold come harvest time.
Being present to “everyone” will eventually wear you thin. It seems easier to do, but it won’t give you or anyone else a crop to sustain you.
We all tend to want everything. We don’t want to miss out.
As you choose one thing, though, you have to let go of something else.
If you try to get everything, you’ll do poorly at most, if not all, of your prospects.
If you’re afraid to miss out, and therefore try hard to not miss anything, you’ll still miss out.
Let’s try this again:
As you let go of some things, you’ll have more time and energy left for other things.
If you focus on one thing at a time, there’s a great possibility you’ll excel in that one thing. If you decide that you’re OK with missing out on some things, you won’t actually miss out, but instead you’ll be fully present where you’re at.
The greatest present you can give your loved ones – and yourself, today, is presence.