'About Time' #3: "Are we there yet?"
“Time is what we want most, but use worst.” William Penn
On a TV programme I watched recently, a group of friends were travelling in a car. One of them was intentionally winding up the driver by saying repeatedly: “Are we there yet? Are we there yet?”. It was funny and also a little annoying, particularly the exaggerated way he was doing it.
It reminded me of how sometimes we can be in a hurry to ‘get somewhere’ other than where we are now in life. This can happen with goals, whether they’re challenges or opportunities, welcome changes or not (and I speak from personal experience here!). What this can bring is a pattern of focusing on something or somewhere other than where we are – in this case the future. It means we can’t be fully present and enjoy things fully along the way. Ironically, it can actually slow us down, potentially leading to regrets later on of not fulfilling our potential (see my earlier blog on this). It can also impact our wellbeing and reduce our ability to be resilient.
Bring to mind a really scenic trip that you enjoyed. If you were constantly thinking about how and when you would get home, being in a hurry to move on, and getting a bit frustrated, you would miss a great deal of the experience: the highlights, discovering new things, noticing how good it feels to be in the moment.
When we’re in a hurry to get somewhere else, we also miss the opportunity to learn about patterns of thought or behaviour which could be repeating and holding us back in other ways too. With this can be negative emotions, such as fear, frustration, a sense of loss or scarcity.
The good news is, we can practise bringing our attention to the present, and become more aware of when our minds are wandering somewhere else. And given that research has proved that our minds are wandering almost half of the time (see note 1 below), that’s worth learning about!
Join me for one of my workshops coming soon, to learn to be more present, achieve more of the things you want in life and work, and find satisfaction and fulfilment so you can thrive.
If you would like to have a complimentary 1:1 session, please get in touch!
Note 1: According to neuroscientific research by the University of Wisconsin, led by Richard Davidson PhD, our minds are wandering 47% of the time. It has been proved in further studies that our minds tend towards negative thoughts and emotion when left to drift unconsciously.