Mindfulness is all about being fully aware in the present moment. We tend to live our lives ruminating on the past or thinking about the future. We’re constantly playing out predictions and possibilities in our head, or thinking about past interactions.
This plays a useful evolutionary role, allowing us to learn from our experiences and to make decisions about the future. However, the downside is that we often become stuck in an endless inner monologue that doesn't really help us.
When we become more aware of our thoughts as they arise, it becomes easier to simply let them go instead of getting caught up in them. This helps us to connect with the present moment.
In this way, meditation can bring a sense of tranquility and calm. It can help us to find peace with the things that we cannot change right this moment. Mindfulness is the skill of becoming more aware in the present moment, and you can refine this skill through meditation, but also by practicing being more mindful throughout the day. If you can periodically take a few moments to clearly notice how you feel, then this will soon become second nature. Just observe sensations in the body, emotions, and your reactions to your environment, and you will become more grounded in the present moment.
Here are 15 inspirational quotes to help you develop a greater sense of awareness in the here-and-now.
“Every time we become aware of a thought, as opposed to being lost in a thought, we experience that opening of the mind.”
— Joseph Goldstein
“Wherever you are, be there totally.”
— Eckhart Tolle
“Mindful and creative, a child who has neither a past, nor examples to follow, nor value judgments, simply lives, speaks and plays in freedom.”
— Arnaud Desjardins
“Flow with whatever may happen and let your mind be free: Stay centered by accepting whatever you are doing."
“Now is the future that you promised yourself last year, last month, last week. Now is the only moment you’ll ever really have. Mindfulness is about waking up to this.”
— Mark Williams
"We are here; this is happening now"
— Will Varley
"This very moment is the perfect teacher, and, lucky for us, it's with us wherever we are"
— Pema Chödrön
“We have only now, only this single eternal moment opening and unfolding before us, day and night.”
— Jack Kornfield
“It’s only when we truly know and understand that we have a limited time on earth – and that we have no way of knowing when our time is up – that we will begin to live each day to the fullest, as if it was the only one we had.”
— Elisabeth Kübler-Ross
“The art of living… is neither careless drifting on the one hand nor fearful clinging to the past on the other. It consists in being sensitive to each moment, in regarding it as utterly new and unique, in having the mind open and wholly receptive”
— Alan Watts
“Few of us ever live in the present. We are forever anticipating what is to come or remembering what has gone.”
— Louis L'Amour
“The present moment is filled with joy and happiness. If you are attentive, you will see it.”
— Thich Nhat Hanh
"Breathe. Let go. And remind yourself that this very moment is the only one you know you have for sure."
— Oprah Winfrey
"Look past your thoughts, so you may drink the pure nectar of This Moment."
"If you want to conquer the anxiety of life, live in the moment, live in the breath."
— Amit Ray