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What I told Ollie this morning…

By Marcus Santer

There’s a lot of frowny faces here in the Santer household this morning.

How come?

Well Clarabella and Ollie have been on holiday for the last 10 days and now it’s time to go back to work for one of them and back to school for the other.

I tell you, the look on Ollie’s face this morning when he came out of his bedroom.

His bottom lip was stuck out so far, you coulda parked a bus on it.

He then continued to tell me what a terrible nights sleep he had and how rough he felt. I didn’t have the heart to do it, but as a parent I knew it needed to be done. So I put my hand on his shoulder and said:

“That’s unfortunate darling, but you’ve still got to go to school.”

His whole body slumped and I felt the need to try and make it all alright for him. So I explained that we all have to do things we don’t want to sometimes. That it’s a part of life. I pointed out how people all over the world were starting a week of work they didn’t want to go to. How children the world over were feeling like he does about starting another week of school.

I even gave him my example and pointed out I have to go to the hospital today to talk to a doctor about having some wisdom teeth taken out.

And I told him, the secret to stuff like this was to not think about it until you have to think about it. Because dwelling on future unwanted events does no good.

He nodded his head and shuffled off back to his room.

It broke my heart to see him and if I could do anything to make it all alright for him I would.

I tell you, it was much easier when he was a toddler, when he was upset about something, all I had to do then was pretend to nearly fall over, with my arms flailing around everywhere whilst making silly ‘falling over noises’ and within seconds he’d be laughing his little head off.

Distraction is a powerful tool, but as he’s got older he’s got much harder to distract.

So if you’re doing something today you really don’t want to do.

I want you to know I feel your discomfort.

Remember, this is life you and I are living and sometimes you gotta do what you gotta do, whether you want to do it or not.

But you don’t have to dwell on it.

I know you can face the battles of this day in this day.

So keep your focus in the here and now.

For all the billions of dollars made teaching mindfulness, for all the thousands of articles and books written on the subject, it simply boils down to this:

The non-judgemental focus of attention
on an experience as it occurs.

Stay in the now, keep your attention in the now.

Because there is nothing you can’t handle in the now.

It’s remorse, bitterness or regret for something in the past or fear and dread for something happening in the future defeats you.

Be Here Now

On page 52 of my book ZEN+ The Art and Science of Living Healthier for Longer, you’ll find a brief discussion of this very subject along with a simple yet powerful tool to help bring you back to and keep you in the now.

Bye for this now

Marcus

P.S. The Be Here Now tip is just one of 120 you’ll find in my ZEN+ book.

Here’s how one happy reader summed it up:

“I am enjoying very much the ZEN+ book. You surely have a way of arranging in a very logical and thought provoking way all the important aspects of life. You also have a way of concisely writing about each topic while putting forth the most important information on that topic”
Paul Hoderlein

Right, I’ve got to go put Ollie’s leg splint on and see if I can distract him.

You on the other hand should go here now.