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Why Building Self-Worth Starts by Living in the Present

“Time isn’t precious at all, because it is an illusion. What you perceive as precious is not time but the one point that is out of time: the Now. That is precious indeed. The more you are focused on time—past and future—the more you miss the Now, the most precious thing there is.”
― Eckhart Tolle, The Power of Now: A Guide to Spiritual Enlightenment

If you follow me or my work, you might have noticed that I am always telling people to stay in the present. As Eckhart Tolle wrote in “The Power of Now,” we often think that time is precious. But time in and of itself is not precious. When we think of time being precious, we tend to look to the future and imagine all the things we need to accomplish, or we look to the past for answers or clues to who we are and where we are meant to go.

But what is really precious is the NOW, the moment that is happening exactly at this very beat of the universe’s metronome. The present is truly the only tangible time that matters, and it matters because it is the only time in which we have total control and authority. The Now is powerful because it can be bent to our will. It can be authored by our thoughts and our behaviors. We can create our Now, every moment.

Right now, in your present state, you have everything you need to make the choices that will fulfill you and give you peace. Right now, in your present state, you get to pick the thoughts that will serve you and the experiences that will align with your life goals. You are completely in the driver’s seat when you are in the present.

I think this is part of the reason why some of us resist being in the now. It isn’t just that we are so worried about the future or that we are so hung up on the past. It’s because ruminating and catastrophizing can be more comfortable than looking in the mirror and realizing, “I am in total control of my life. Everything I do, think, and feel is up to me.”

That is an exciting thought, but it can also be an understandingly scary one. If we have all the power, we don’t get to rationalize away when we make bad choices or don’t put our dreams first. We don’t have blame to shift around. We don’t have memories to escape into or fears to occupy our mind. We are forced to reckon with our own power and stop making excuses. We are suddenly confronted with the powerful knowledge that all of this (everything we see, think, feel, and do) is totally our choice and our decision.

Yep, that is kind of overwhelming, isn’t it? But as scared as you might be, when you get out of your comfort zone and start owning your own power, that’s when the magic can really start to happen.

I talk about this topic of personal power and how to grow self-confidence on my latest episode of “The Language of Love” with my guest Lisa Bilyeu. Lisa is the founder of the billion-dollar health food corporation Quest Nutrition as well as the president of Impact Theory, a weekly interview show which helps ignite human potential and support people who are chasing after their dreams. (You can listen to the podcast to hear my chat with Lisa here).

One thing Lisa and I discuss is how self-worth requires grit and resilience. If we want to create radical confidence, we have to take complete ownership of our thoughts. It’s not that we can never have negative thoughts about ourselves or that we will never get down when our ventures don’t pan out as well as we hoped. But we need to learn to be able to step back, observe those thoughts, and then think “This mess isn’t serving me” and let those thoughts go.

We all have choices, and even when we make a bad choice, we need to own that. Instead of looking for excuses or wallowing in shame or regret, it is so much more empowering to say “I made a bad choice, but I believe I have the power to make a better one right now.”

And that is the gift of the Now, the power of the present. Every moment we are being offered the gift to make a better choice, to choose a kinder thought, to break patterns that aren’t helping us achieve what we want in this lifetime.

Once you really lean into that gift, you will be amazed at how your confidence skyrockets. When you stop feeling like a victim or a villain, when you stop making up the story that you’re at the whim of the people around you or your family of origin or your own past mistakes, you will realize how unstoppable and resilient you really are. You will realize how awesome and lovable and strong you are. You won’t tell yourself to wait until you lose 20 pounds or get a new job or find a spouse to feel that way. You will realize you can feel that way right now, not tomorrow, not next week, not next month. Right now.

Now is our point of choice. So, tell me, what are you going to choose for yourself right now that is going to uplift you and honor your talents? Reach out to me on social media after you listen to the podcast and let me know! I love to hear from you. 

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