What does it mean to live in the moment? How can you tell if you are fully being present? Is it the amount of focus and attention that you put into what you are doing? Or is it based on how deeply you feel about your surroundings at any given moment?
It’s 10 pm and you finally arrive home. The traffic was terrible and you think about all the paperwork, meetings and projects you dealt with all day. You let out a deep sigh as you close the front door behind you. You walk to the fridge to get yourself a drink while you scan the kitchen for something to cook for dinner. You’re too tired now, so you skip dinner and brewed coffee instead. You sit there waiting, thinking how busy this week has been. You can’t believe it’s Friday night already! You say to yourself, “the days are going by so quick”. Then, you realize how often you say that phrase. Are the days really going by so fast? Or is it you that’s not slowing down?
It happens to the best of us. I would often struggle with finding the balance between life and work, often forgetting to make time for the things that are truly important including time with myself and people that I love. It has been a challenge for me to slow down because I have always thought of being busy the same as being productive.
Living in the moment is really just being more grounded and self-aware. It’s when you’re having a lovely meal with your loved ones and you catch yourself looking at every single one of them, carefully observing how everyone is eating and laughing. You sit back basking in the ambiance and the mood of what is happening around you.
It’s every time you take a pause.
It’s those instances wherein you are so enamored by the things you look at but you don’t take out your phone. You stay still. You remain. Because that moment is yours and you are in that moment. You don’t feel the need to take a picture because it doesn’t require proof.
It is yours. And it is real. And it is beautiful.
In that moment,
you realize that there is no future.
Because all we really have is the present moment.
We can’t love tomorrow.
We can’t breathe for tomorrow.
For we can never know what tomorrow brings. It may never come.
All we have is now.
Each moment is a gift.
The cars are beeping outside. You start to hear the sounds of people; of all the noise around you.
You open your eyes and stretched those aching arms of yours feeling unmotivated to start another day at work. But you realize that today is a special day. Because you have an entire day to yourself and you could spend it anyway you want to.
But here’s the catch: this day must bring you pleasure and true fulfillment.
You cannot use it to help you “catch up” with your tasks and chores.
So, how will your day play out?
This is a wonderful activity to do especially with your special someone.
With this, we got to understand what makes each other’s day extra sweet and special. Our answers were simple and yet we found it most pleasurable and fulfilling. On top of our list was spending time with our loved ones. It was as simple as having everyone at the dining table over breakfast or going out together for a quick walk. These activities were immensely pleasurable for us because we rarely get the chance to “pause” and enjoy the company of the people we love, since we are always too focused on our work, we often forget what truly matters in life.
Next was our spontaneous random dates. We’re both on that level in our careers where tasks and schedules can be so demanding, so prioritizing that “much needed breakaway” is an important aspect in our relationship. It’s not the luxurious restaurants or the fancy food that we could eat that would make it pleasurable nor truly fulfilling but it’s simply just being “present in the moment” while with each other. We’ve enjoyed long walks in Luneta and UST. We also found it truly fulfilling to study or read a book beside each other.
We truly believe that presence or simply being “in the moment” is a key factor in finding your “Ikigai”.
Ask yourself this simple question: for whom do you wake up for?
(Para kanino ka bumabangon)?
What is your reason for living?
For most of us, it would be our family, our work, our passion to search for what matters most. Often times, we arrive to a point in life that we wonder, “is this really what we want in life?” Maybe the purpose of life is to just be, and maybe that’s why we are called “human beings” because we only need to just “be“.
This is what our journey is about, to understand not just the reason for “living” but our “reason for being“, that is what “Ikigai” is about. “Ikigai” has no direct translation in the english dictionary, however, according to most writers it came from two Japanese words, “Ikiru” meaning “to live” and “Kai” meaning “the realization of what one hopes for“.
We are just two passionate human beings on a journey to discover our Ikigai: our reason for being. We’ll continue to ask ourselves these four questions:
- What do I love?
- What am I good at?
- What does the world need from me?
- What can I get paid for?
We both made a conscious decision to discuss these matters earnestly and openly in order for us to really understand ourselves but most importantly each other. This blog is where we will write our thoughts discussions. We will be using My Little Ikigai Journal by Amanda Kudo as a guide to our journey and we are excited to share this journey with you!
Good company in a journey makes the way seem shorter. — Izaak Walton