One of the best coping skills for “enduring” chronic conditions –problems that seem to go-on-and-on-and-on…. is learning to live One Day at a Time.
“I have spoken over the years with many individuals who have told me, “I have so many problems, such real concerns. I’m overwhelmed with the challenges of life. What can I do?“ I have offered to them, and I now offer to you, this specific suggestion: seek heavenly guidance ONE DAY AT A TIME. Life by the yard is hard; by the inch it’s a cinch. Each of us can be true for just one day—and then one more and then one more after that—until we’ve lived a lifetime guided by the Spirit, a lifetime close to the Lord, a lifetime of good deeds and righteousness.” (Thomas S. Monson, “Believe, Obey, and Endure,” General Young Women’s Meeting, March 24, 2012)
LIVING IN THE PRESENT
WILL CHANGE YOUR ETERNITY
If you’re not living in the present, you’re living in an illusion, a world that doesn’t exist. The past is gone the future isn’t here. Benefits of coping come when you live in the present-Just get through this day.
As a shrink I’ve learned MANY problems are caused by…
either from worrying about some aspect of their future or their past. (And in many cases both-their past and their future.) It’s been my experience this type of worry is like paying rent (worry and anguish) on a house you don’t own-and never will.
As a shrink I’ve learned MANY problems are solved by…
learning to live in the present. Living in the present has a dramatic effect on our emotional well-being, and a positive impact on our physical health. It’s long been known that the amount of mental stress you carry can have a detrimental impact on your health. If you’re living in the present, you’re living in acceptance demonstrating an ability to “Let go and Let God ” (See: Cosmically Competent).
“The secret of health for both mind and body is not to mourn for the past, worry about the future, but to live in the present moment wisely and earnestly.” – Buddha
“One day at a time.” – Alcoholic Anonymous slogan
“Take therefore no thought for the morrow: for the morrow shall take thought for the things of itself. Sufficient unto the day is the evil thereof.”- (Matthew 6:34)
There is a whole field of psychology focused on the importance of living in the present-Mindfulness. For example, in Psychology Today “Mindfulness” is defined as: “… state of active, open attention on the present. When you’re mindful, you observe your thoughts and feelings from a distance, without judging them good or bad. Instead of letting your life pass you by, mindfulness means living in the moment and awakening to experience.” Practicing mindfulness means we practice our awareness in all our actions. We must simply learn to live in the moment. See Mindfulness in Wikipedia
“The burden of future nurturing can seem overwhelming. Looking ahead to the uncertain years or even to a lifetime of constant, backbreaking care may seem more than one can bear. There are often many tears before reality is acknowledged. Parents and family members can then begin to accept and take the burden a day at a time”(In the Strength of the Lord: The Life and Teachings of James E. Faust pg. 286)
Or how about this SECRET:
“To travel from where you are to where you would like to be seems overwhelming and almost impossible. THE SECRET is to live the best you know how just ONE DAY AT A TIME, and if the day seems too long, we should break it down into hours or even minutes.” (When a Prophet Speaks, Listen Well, Robert L. Simpson, Conference Report, October 1970)
“One Day at a Time” an essential Coping skill
Living in the present isn’t just a tip but an essential behavior for ENDURANCE. You will NOT successfully deal with problems that go-on-and-on-and-on WITHOUT learning to live one day at time.
First: When you become aware that your thoughts are wandering off to the future challenges or past pain – change them Think in your mind- Just for today. Just for this hour. and perhaps just for this minute.
Second: Try one of the following Mindfulness exercises:
1) Two mindful bites. Instead of attempting to do mindful eating all the time, try mindful eating for the first two bites of any meal or snack. For the first two bites of any meal or snack you eat, pay attention to the sensory experiences – the texture, taste, smell, and appearance of the food, and the sounds when you bite into your food.
2) What one breath feels like. Instead of formal meditation, try paying attention to what one breath feels like. Feel the sensations of one breath flowing into and out from your body. Notice the sensations in your nostrils, your shoulders, your rib cage, your belly etc.
3) Take a mindful moment to give your brain a break instead of checking your email. Instead of checking my email in the 5 minutes between therapy clients, I spend a few seconds watching out my window. I usually watch the clouds floating through the sky.
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