Something That Might Be about Being Present in the Present

by Chris McGinty

I’m good at wanting to be at the place I’m not. Audio entertainment like YouTube videos and audio books is ideal when I’m delivering when. I should work on building an eBay business when I’m at home. I should write when I’m guarding. I do none of those things, but no matter where I’m at I wish I was at one of the other places so I could do those things that are the best fit. Trust me it’s not a good thing to be thinking about grocery shopping when having sex… or vice versa.

There may be a bigger picture idea here though. Nevermind that I listen to YouTube videos when I’m home and should doing home stuff. Nevermind that I always think that I’ll get better writing done when I’m not at my guard job, but will have trouble finding the time when I’m not. Nevermind that I keep wandering over to the Jell-O aisle (based on a true story that never really happened, but somehow I know that people will believe that it did). The truth is some of us spend too much of our lives worrying about what we wish we were doing and not enough time on what we can do. This becomes a problem when the thing we wish we could do is out of our reach.

That Jell-O joke sounds about a hundred times worse if I don’t explain it. Eh. That’s a lot of typing.

You remember I mentioned YouTube videos? You get to find out a lot about human nature by reading the comments or by watching videos that address comments. I also learn many things about my own nature. It’s easy to start imagining what it will be like when you’re a bestselling author before you’ve become a good writer, but it is a thing that happens. It’s impatience. I think there’s a line spoken by Yoda about never paying attention to where he was and what he was doing, but Miguel is probably asleep right now, and there is no way else I know of to find that information. My instinct says to talk about internet servers, but that’s a lot of typing.

Nevermind, oh well, whatever doing he was.

Make a List of Possible Things – I bet there are a lot of things you’d like to do in life that you can actually do now. Do those things and enjoy your life. When I start fantasizing about what my life will be like in the future, it’s usually because I haven’t asked myself what is possible to do now that I might enjoy. If I were to make a list of everything I’d like to do in the next five years, I bet a high percentage of those things would be possible for me to do now. I also bet that I’d focus more on the things that are out of my reach right now. It’s not a good way to run my life.

Do Some of the Pre-requitsite Things – Can’t be a bestselling author yet? Form a writing habit. You’re going to need it later or you’ll end up being J. D. Salinger (or worse, George R. R. Martin). Can’t go on that romantic cruise? (That’s a thing I have no interest in doing, but I needed another example of something that might be out of reach) Set up a savings account for a cruise fund and route your paycheck from your cruise affording part-time job straight into it. Try not to break up with your romantic partner in the meantime. It’s not at all romantic getting seasick unless you have someone to hold your hair while you vomit. I’m really talking myself out of this cruise that I was never interested in.

I’m not sure why this picture of Cloud City is here.

One last thought before I go sign up for a cruise just to have the satisfaction of canceling it; it’s just as easy to fall into wishing for the past to be different. Aside from a few 12-step things, you can’t do anything about the past, so don’t dwell. You can affect the future, but only in limited ways. Yes, there is the concept that if you take small steps daily that you can transform your life in the long term, but each time you take those daily small steps you are in the present. Until we figure out this whole string theory thing, you’re always in the present. Heed those Yoda words that I’ll have to ask Miguel about later.

Chris McGinty is a blogger who is writing this blog post because the novel(s) he’s working on is (are all) so far away from being completed that he decided to work on the thing that he could do now. Wait. That’s not what my point was. I should have been working on the current chapter of one of those novels rather that running off to Cloud City. I think that joke would only work if I’d established earlier that the blog is on an internet server and then questioned if all internet servers are considered to be clouds. I’m going to go back and change that right now… eh, lot of typing.

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