Being Present with What Is

Sep 01, 2022

When I'm teaching yoga, I invite my students to try and be present with what is. That means however their bodies feel or whatever their minds are doing, to just allow that to be present without getting entangled in it. It's definitely easier said than done. So, how can some people not get all riled up by things and other people lose it at the slightest inconvenience? Well, it takes a lot of practice. 


Start Small
You can try this when you first wake up in the morning: before you get out of bed, check in with your body, mind, and emotions. What's going on? Did you not sleep well? Did you have a weird dream? Does your body feel stiff? Are you still mulling over something that happened a few days ago? Simply notice. Try to observe whatever is present in your physical being and your mental state. Then, don't get involved. 


That's right. See if you can just "be" with your achy body, uncomfortable emotions, or whatever is going on. It could also be a good thing happening. You might be excited about something coming up in your day ahead, but try not to attach any judgements, labels, or perceptions about it. Just allow it to be there. 

Starting small like this can help you build up to bigger things. 

Notice Your Response
If you can't just "be" with your painful body or an emotion, like it's just too much to even detach yourself from it, see if you can notice how you respond to it. If you hurt your lower back and you're judging yourself for being stupid to lift that heavy thing when you think you shouldn't have done it, notice that. Why are you calling yourself stupid? Maybe you thought you could do it in the moment, or maybe it was because you were helping someone. You don't have to be so critical of yourself. 

You can do this throughout your day. If someone cuts you off on your commute home and you get furious, ask yourself why. Does it really matter in the grand scheme of your life that someone cut you off? Maybe that person didn't even realize they did it, and maybe you've done it someone else without realizing it too. 

Be Patient with Yourself
We're often so hard on ourselves and that sometimes get projected out into the world because we don't want to admit that we're less than perfect. I know whenever I feel impatient with myself, I'm more likely to lash out at someone else who whatever I'm impatient about back to me.

Being present with whatever is going on inside of you—without reacting, judging, labeling, or criticizing—is really a lifelong practice. You're never done with it. You just get better at now allowing things to upset you. And since we live in a world that can be challenging at times, it's a skill most of us would really like to have.




I've created a special 12-minute guided meditation for you.

If you're feeling disconnected this is the meditation for you. You'll practice welcoming whatever feelings are present right now so you can connect back to your true self.

Download Now