Have you ever had the experience of going to a rock concert or an art museum or a party with close friends, witnessing the birth of a child, being there at the passing of a life, or a moment when somebody is saved, and that feeling of there’s nothing else that matters but what is here right now?
That is aliveness. And that’s exactly the same thing as presence, where you don’t have a judgment about what’s here now.
Have you been making up a story that you don’t deserve to have presence? A lot of the time presence is considered a lower priority because you believe business or a certain meeting is more important. But a lack of presence is a lack of aliveness. A lack of presence is a lack of power.
Presence is available to you 100% of the time, always. You don’t need a poofy cushion and yoga pants, unless that’s your vibe. There are a ton of ways to be present.
Don’t know where to start? Here are 9 quick ways to regain presence
When you focus on anyone and ask yourself what you can appreciate about them and see what they bring to your life that enables your growth.
The application of appreciation can bring us into present reality. It requires that we take a moment to acknowledge what is here now.
It can be difficult, but taking the extra step to appreciate someone who may be more challenging for you to appreciate can often shift our mindset from one that is below the line, to an empowered stance. When we accept that everything that happens to us is for our own growth and benefit, we can find the capacity to appreciate even the challenging relationships in our lives.
Appreciate something around you
This is one of the simplest ways to achieve presence. All you need to do is apply your attention to any single thing around you. Find 10 things to appreciate about that item. That may sound like a lot, but it’s easier than you think. Use your creativity and find some gratitude for that object.
By requiring focus, this exercise brings you to presence reliably. It’s difficult to think about your agenda for tomorrow when you are finding 10 days to appreciate your armchair, and that’s the point.
Take the moment to be here, now.
Take control of what you can control and activate the powerful, life-giving, autonomic functions that your body already has inside of it. Breathing naturally grounds you and brings you mental clarity.
Try the four-part breath release. Four seconds inhale. Hold that breathe for four seconds. Then breathe out for four. Repeat that four times
In conscious meditation, you’re not trying to tune anything out. You’re not trying to tune out your thoughts. You’re not trying to tune out your feelings. You’re not trying to tune out any external noises.
In fact, you are welcoming all of them. You’re saying, I’m going to be with what is here now for as long as it’s here now. And I’m not going to hold onto it, I’m going to let it go. And I’m even going to be conscious about when I do hold onto it.
Find any topic to get curious about. Get curious on purpose about a person, or a topic. It doesn’t need to be a big research project. Practicing asking open, honest questions about that topic. Even sitting there and trying to find a question is a presencing exercise. Don’t judge yourself for how many questions you can come up with. The point is, can you get curious about anything?
Drastically change your posture
Tuning into your body is a fast, simple way to regain presence. Focusing on your physicality and body sensations and shifting consciously brings you into the here and now. It engages your senses and invites you to live in a fact-based moment.
You can stand up, walk around. Uncross your hands or feet. Look up instead of down. Shift your body and tune into yourself and your environment.
Walk in the grass
State shifting, like going from dry land into water, indoors to outdoors, warmth to cold, is a quick and reliable way to achieve presence.
Applying your bare feet to the ground helps to discharge energy that’s been building up inside of you, especially energy that might come from the world around you, and friction you’re holding onto. Spending time outside will help you get back into flow and connect into and out of the earth.
When you are zeroed in on how your body reacts to your environment, you can achieve a unique state of presence that integrates your inner and outer realities.
When you are out of presence, you get really wrapped up in your own stories. You get really wrapped up in your theories, what you think, your interpretations, what’s going to happen, what things mean. But when you are in presence, you are attending to facts.
This form of communication helps focus your mind and body on what is true now, in the present moment.
Exaggerate your current attitude
In this exercise, even when you don’t want to feel like how you’re feeling, you are going to express and embody that feeling in an even bigger, more dramatic way. Feeling angry? Throw yourself on the ground and have a toddler-level temper tantrum.
This brings you to presence because it is ALLOWING what is here now to be here. You aren’t trying to squash, deny, or “should” your way out of your current state. Experience it, and then you can let it go if that’s what you want.
Presence is Conscious Leadership
Our inner work affects our outer world. Presence is the difference between approaching your life as something happening to you versus something happening by you. When life is happening by you, you feel alive. You recognize that you have agency, you have creativity, and you have power.
What could be more freeing than that?