Living in the Present?

The episode of House is on where they tell the guy that he doesn’t have cancer after all.  And he’s mad.  Because he sold his house, had three good-bye parties, and is fixing to leave on the trip of his life.

He’d cleaned up all the loose ends of his life and was in the process of doing what was most important to him with the time he had left.

But now he has to go back to the messiness of living daily life.  And now he’s no longer special.  And this mistake has cost him money.

So the doctor is getting sued.  Not for the money.  But for this:

“For the first time in my life, I was living in the present.  And you took that away.”

We seem to have a hard time living in the present, living today to its fullest without really worrying about tomorrow or re-living yesterday.  Human nature, maybe.  I’m convinced that some people must miss living their lives completely because they’re so focused on the future or the past.

Sometimes it takes a life-shaking event like a cancer diagnosis to help people focus on the present.  One of the most common phrases I hear from cancer patients and their families is, “We’re just taking it a day at a time.”  That’s another way of saying that they’re living in the present.

So as we prepare to head into the new year, here are a couple of questions to ponder (and comment on if you like):

  • How “present-focused” is your life right now?
  • How do you feel when you’re living in the present vs. living in the past or future?
  • What if anything needs to change to help you live more in the present?

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