Have you ever been out in public and watched people so engrossed with their cellphones that they’re oblivious to the world around them? You might have thought, “Wow! That’s an accident waiting to happen. Glad I never do that!”
Some such phrase usually goes through my head when I see someone interact (or not interact) with the world in this manner. Yet, just the other day, that person was me.
I was walking in Herald Square, in front of Macy’s, and I was looking so intently at my phone, totally unconscious of the world around me, that I just about walked into barricade! Fortunately, some sort of sixth sense told me to look up at the right time. Had I not, I would definitely have hit my head.
What was I thinking? The barricade could’ve been a person.What would have happened if I had run into him or her? Not to mention how foolish I must’ve looked. I might even have hurt myself.
As much as I don’t like it when other people do things like that, and like even less when I do it, I don’t think it’s at all uncommon to go through the world unconsciously at times. Realistically, it’s easy enough to do.
Maybe you become so engrossed in an important work email that you don’t realize the person sitting across the dining table from you is looking sad and blue. Or perhaps you’re so busy replaying a work conversation over and over in your head that you don’t see your child staring at you from across the room, wishing you would engage a little.
Even when we’re alone, how much do we miss if we’re always looking at our phones, reliving the past, or daydreaming about the future? How many sunrises aren’t appreciated? How many random acts of kindness are passed over? How many loving interactions never happen – solely because we’re too lost in ourselves and our own little worlds?
Are there times when we really have to handle our business immediately, so we’re not as mindful as we could be? Absolutely. But there’s a time and a place for such urgency. Far too often, we let the boundaries blur between those times and our regular lives.
I don’t know about you, but I am going to make a more conscious effort to live in the moment. To live in today. If something can wait for me to handle it (let’s face it, most things can), then that’s what I am going to remind myself to do – wait. Wait until I’m not doing anything else and can focus on it entirely.
What do you say? Will you join me in this quest to live more in the moment? To spend more time appreciating the here and now? We can’t live in the past or future. Now is the only time we have. Why not make the most of it?