Many of us spend most of our time completely focused on an event, a goal, a challenge or an accomplishment but how often do we pay attention to the time in between those experiences? Staying focused on an event of any sort can certainly help you achieve your goals while in the process of them, but more often than not we are also holding on to those events long before they happen and long after they have come and gone. With this habit we miss out on opportunities that are available in the present because we can’t let go of the past or we’re continuously worrying about the future.
On a smaller scale: Exercise Habits
The next time you’re in a class, a training run or ride or in any sort of practice, consider the way in which you handle yourself in between reps or sets, intervals or postures. Do you exhale dramatically and flop around like a fish, or do you try to stay composed and transition smoothly in and out of each one? We all need to relax from time to time, but think about what happens to you mentally as well as physically when you release your composure so much so that you lose focus—your body is no longer fully engaged but neither is your mind. These are the moments in which negative thoughts and frustration can creep in which can then make you convince yourself that you can’t keep going or you have nothing left. If we take the time to work on graceful transitions we not only build additional strength by staying physically engaged, we stay focused on the bigger picture of improving our overall fitness or performance in the long term rather than a finite goal for one day.
On a broader scale: Life
How many times do we overlook our day-to-day experiences because we’re too busy analyzing events that have already passed or anticipating all the things that could go wrong in the future? If that’s all we’re putting our energy into there’s no part of us focusing on what’s going on right now. The only way we can appreciate what’s happening in the moment is to be in the moment. The next time you find yourself complaining about the past or over thinking the future, take a minute to reset yourself and find something to either appreciate or learn from right then and there. Sometimes it’s just about doing the best you can at everything you do. Sometimes it’s about accepting the present just as it is in order to move on and move forward. Other times it’s simply about realizing there actually is something to appreciate in your life.
Whether you’re working through a difficult time, a physical or emotional challenge or you just need to learn to enjoy life more, there’s so much potential in the transitions that we experience and we owe it to ourselves to explore them all. It’s not just about the big events that come and go, it’s the smaller moments in between that can truly add to the quality of our daily life.