Busy Person's Retreat Week 4: Presence

Day 1

“Life moves pretty fast. If you don't stop and look around once in a while, you could miss it.”  Ferris Bueller


For Today:

Take some time to look around.  Take deep breaths.  Slow down.  Savor all the goodness in your life.


Day 2

"If people tell you that you should live your life preparing for the future, do not believe them. Real Life is found only in the present."  Leo Tolstoy


For Today:

Work to be in the moment.  Catch yourself if you start thinking too much about the past, or the future, and bring your focus back to the present.


Day 3

"Finish each day and be done with it. You have done what you could; some blunders and absurdities have crept in; forget them as soon as you can. Tomorrow is a new day; you shall begin it serenely and with too high a spirit to be encumbered with your old nonsense." Ralph Waldo Emerson


For Today:

At the end of your day, think back on all that has occurred.  Seek to accept all of your day with gratitude and compassion.  Then let the “blunders and absurdities” drift away in your mind, like soap bubbles in a gentle wind. 


Day 4

“The present moment is filled with joy and happiness. If you are attentive, you will see it." Thích Nhat Hanh, 21st century"


For Today:

Be on the lookout for the times in your day that bring joy and happiness.  Be present in this moment.  Soak it in.  Let them buoy you through the more difficult moments of your day.


Day 5

“Look past your thoughts so you may drink the pure nectar of this moment.”  Rumi


For Today:

Seek to get out of your head.  Pay attention to your senses; be aware of what you see, smell, feel, and taste.


Day 6

“To have a mission means to give life, to heal, and to liberate.... And we can become people of liberation and of healing because we ourselves are walking along that road toward inner healing and inner liberation. Healing begins here, in myself.” Jean Vanier


For Today:

What are the parts of life that need healing?  Spend time sitting in a comfortable position, or lying on the floor, and visualize these pieces of your life.  Picture yourself embracing these hurts, telling them that they have no hold on you.  Then imagine yourself placing them in small boats on a river, and watching them disappear as they float downstream.


Day 7

“Life can be found only in the present moment. The past is gone, the future is not yet here, and if we do not go back to ourselves in the present moment, we cannot be in touch with life.” Thich Nhat Hanh


For Today:

Seek to pay attention to the present moments of your day with kindness and curiosity.  What are these moments teaching you?