Presence: The Gift That Gives Back

guilty as charged. i write this with myself in mind.

PRESENCE: when you are completely, utterly, fully existing.

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ok – so let’s just start this off by keeping it real.  social media and the iPhone ruined it for us all by turning life into a video game.  this crazy, loco new age world we live in has trained our minds to crave constant stimulation – from the moment we wake up until we close our eyes at night.  it’s messing with our ability to be PRESENT, and breeds a vibe of constant FOMO (fear of missing out – for the old heads) that we just cant shake.

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the world we currently live in has basically turned into the show Black Mirror – we are constantly seeking validation and approval from those around us.  technology has jedi mind tricked us into thinking that ‘likes’ and ‘engagement’ make us better people, and now we seek approval digitally just as much as we do through IRL human interaction. (IRL = in real life, oldies).

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it’s making us sacrifice who we are at the core; it’s causing these micro-spikes in our esteem and altering the way we navigate the world.  it’s effing with our true, at-the-core PRESENCE. ugh! something has got to change, and i believe that the change is already living inside of each of us.  we’ve just got to tap into it (no double tap necessary).  we are all true, real-life gifts to this earth and we must protect ourselves by constantly seeking ways to be[come] holistically ever-PRESENT.

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it’s a new year, friends.  and everyone typically creates these super-lofty goals and resolutions.  we make all of these internal promises to be “better” than we were the year before.  “better”, yes with quotes.  i struggle with that word, because better semi-implies a…i don’t know what it implies but it makes me feel weird inside.

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okay, well the dictionary proved me wrong.  the word BETTER is back on the table. i just don’t like it because it implies competition in some ways.  and there is no need to compete against your former self – it’s more about EVOLVING, being PRESENT in the moment, having a stronger PRESENCE in the world, and setting INTENTIONS to make your goals come to fruition.

Even if 2017 was all:

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it’s about coming into the new year feeling like:

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there are a few simple, practical, easy-to-implement things that i have added to my life’s routine that help me remain PRESENT and cut through the FOMO. i want to share them in hopes that it sparks something within YOU.  bible – sticking to these simple practices have helped me maintain balance and truly helped cut through the madness so that i can appreciate the life around me.

let me get my Erykah Badu on for a second:

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  1. Find your rituals – mine are: drinking a glass of water before i leave the house every day, saging my house and watering my plants every saturday morning, and using aromatherapy to keep my emotions in check.
  2. Do something for ME – every pay day, i do something small for myself.  i buy a new book, or some crystals / rocks,  or a shirt i’ve been eyeing.  nothing life changing, but just a little “good job” from me, to me. (oh, and i usually buy myself a donut somewhere in there too!)
  3. GIVE – i regularly make it a point to treat someone to coffee, donate clothes and money, surprise someone with something, offer a listening ear to a friend, support local artists and causes, or give genuine compliments to people who cross my path.  it makes me feel good inside and really makes me feel really PRESENT / in the moment to do something, even if it is small, for someone other than myself.

i asked a few anonymous friends to answer a survey about PRESENCE and to share their truths.  here’s what they had to say:

where did you focus your energy the most this week?

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what is the BEST gift you’ve ever received?

Motherhood. I was young and it accelerated my evolution. I’ve experienced nothing as challenging nor as rewarding as keeping separate, independent pieces of my heart alive outside of my own body.

Honestly? The adversity I’ve faced because it’s molded my self-identity and my perseverance. Gotta thank life for that one.

Nothing particular out weighs anything, anytime I’m shown compassion I’m sincerely greatful

When I really started getting into putting on make up my friend bought me a set of pink make up brushes (pink is my favorite color)

discuss a time when you were SELFLESS.

2017. for every 1 day of self pity, I would hustle 10 days for others.

Provided an entire thanksgiving dinner (fully cooked along with extra food for the month) for a single mother that also takes care of her family.

Selflessness is less of an instance of time and more a daily intention.

I typically would describe myself as such so this Q is particularly a difficult one for me. I think the best example I can give is that I said goodbye to someone I loved because I knew we weren’t a good fit and I wanted him to have everything he deserved, everything that made him happy — and I knew that was a life beyond me.

in life, when do you feel most PRESENT?  what are you doing, who is around?

Every time I get on a plane.

I’m most present when I’m one on one with someone who wants to learn or teach. I’m most present when I’m engaged in intimate, passionate conversation where walls are broken down and there’s a yearn to understand or to be understood.

When I am alone. Any other time I am struggling to find the right words

When I have volunteered in my daughter’s classroom. I am engaging with her and her classmates. I am observing the skills of the teachers. I am grading papers and sorting finished work into the individual folders. I’m fixing broken classroom books.

PRESENCE.

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PRESENCE is what keeps the volume turned down on the voices in our head.  it’s also how we know when to turn that volume back up and listen to ourselves – it’s how we know when to trust our gut.

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it’s knowing when to put the phone down, when to stop giving your energy to a situation that is not likely to improve.  it’s not being afraid to focus on yourself, for once.  it’s saying no and sticking to it.  being PRESENT is deciding not to apologize arbitrarily. PRESENCE is listening to and truly learning yourself. it’s doing things that make you feel like a whole person. it’s staying connected.

it is what you (and i) deserve.

actual footage of the new, more PRESENT version of ourselves:

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CREW – YOU ARE A GIFT.  NOW, BE PRESENT.

i will always end our #powerpact sessions by saying that i see you, i love you, and i am on your side.  let’s grow.

Comment below to add to this flow of thought.

catch me on the ‘gram if you want at @CALLMEKYLA

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One thought on “Presence: The Gift That Gives Back

  1. Something that I am focused on for 2018 is Self Care and dedicating the time I need for myself to grow, develop and experience Joy and Happiness.
    And,this Article comes at a time in my life where it’s “PROOF” that The Universe is listening and providing me with examples threading down this path.
    The more I continue to develop a stronger bond with myself I am realizing how I’ve been lacking Self Love and how I have failed to recognize the love around me. That’s all different now because of the bond and relationship I’m building with myself.
    I felt the most Selfless when I dismantled the circle of friends I had built because I could no longer be consumed and stripped of my peace of mind. It was my safety net and I no longer needed it because I didn’t feel safe anymore and I was better without it.
    Thank you for writing such a powerful peace and thank you for your wisdom and insight.

    Liked by 1 person

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