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Can You Repeat That?

4 Ways To Be More Present

Posted in Professional Development

Author: Erin Dey

Blogged while still going strong on my New Year’s resolution.

One of the gifts I received from my husband was probably meant to be more of a backhanded way of telling me to chill out more, but little did he know when he bought it for me, that he’d be benefiting from it too.  It’s a little tear-away daily calendar called “Don’t Sweat the Small Stuff (and it is small stuff!)”, that now sits neatly on our bathroom vanity so when he is taking the two minutes to brush his teeth, he can reflect on the daily inspiration that I’ve already read that morning.  See, the great thing about any relationship is that you learn from one another if you are genuinely engaged and committed to being open about your weaknesses.

The first few days have been all about being present.  Could this be any more timely? You are reading this blog on your phone, tablet, laptop, computer, heck your nose is in SOMETHING electronic and isn’t that the case for the majority of our day?  When was the last time you had dinner with your family, spouse or friend and there were NO phones brought to the table? It might not have been to text or take a call, but to share a photo or look something up.  We are distracted 24/7 if we allow ourselves to be. Easy for me to say right? Nope, not really. I’m a mom of three boys in three different sports, working a full-time job while trying to capture the perfect slap shot, on top of all the other joys life brings.

This left me wondering: how can I be more present and make a conscious choice to truly be with the person I’m with in that moment?  Here are few tricks I’m trying out:

  1. Mealtime = family time.  This means everyone is involved in the conversation, TV is off, phones are left in another room, and we talk to one another.  #mindblowing
  2. Daily time limit on your electronics.  You set what is realistic and what works for you.  Even when/if you are alone, be present with yourself.  Go for a walk, meditate, read a book, you get the idea.
  3. Ask questions. When you are with someone, get engaged by asking three open-ended questions.  Get the conversation flowing! Be interested in what they are saying. Listen. Respond. See things as they truly are in that moment.
  4. Make the other person feel they are important to you.  This is probably the one I’m trying the hardest. When we are not present, what message are we sending?  What are we missing? How are we making the other person feel as they are talking and we are scrolling through Instagram or checking our email?  More than likely, not that important and valued. That stinks.
If you think you could be more present for your family, co-worker, customer or whomever; put some conscious effort into it.  It doesn’t take much. Small tweaks here and there to live in the moment that YOU are creating; not what’s going on in the cyber world. It can make a huge difference.  You will be happier, more effective, and can see things as they are in that moment.

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