Ever wonder what it actually means to live an “intentionally present” life?
How is it possible? What does that phrase even mean? How can we live present with the constant demands of life and responsibilities?
Actually living intentionally present is easier than you might think. You can begin these easy-to-implement strategies TODAY and begin living intentionally present no matter your circumstances!
How to Live an Intentionally Present Life is a guest post written by Alicia Hunter of Turquoise Grace.
I sighed with frustration as I stared at an impossible computer screen.
I was following the “simple setup” in the tutorial, but it was driving me crazy!
After spending countless hours, trying to implement my newest blogging technique to no avail, I was spent. Done. Ready to quit all the things.
Before I did something I really regret (like throwing my laptop out of my second story window), I took a deep breath, turned it off, and put it away.
For a week and a half, I didn’t look at a single thing blogging related. I was done.
I decided to stop, shut it down, step back, breathe … and focus on being intentionally present.
As life gets busier, as my children grow older, and as I add more responsibilities to my already loaded plate, these two words – intentionally present – have been slowly marinating in my brain. I want to live intentionally present. But what does that actually mean?
I’ve spent a lot of time wrestling through what that means, and I’ve come to realize that, for me, being intentionally present includes a few key elements.
Being intentionally present means:
1. Time blocking
Time blocking helps immensely with being intentionally present. I work hard when I need to, fitting as much as I can into a specified block of time; then I shut down all of those tasks when the time is up.
This not only makes it easier for me to have solid, focused spurts of work, which is more realistic for me as a mother, but it also helps me devote more focused time with my children.
2. Putting the phone down
I’ve realized that there’s nothing on my phone that can’t wait until later. If I want to be intentionally present, I know that I need to put down my phone.
3. Only checking social media during “designated” times
Another thing that can wait? Anything on social media. Not my children.
Learning to wait is, of course a valuable skill, but I don’t want my kids to take a backseat to social media. The social media can wait until later.
4. Modeling a good example to my boys.
What does it show my boys to see me spinning my wheels day after day? I don’t want to model to my kids that mom is too busy for them or that life is meant to be lived in constant chaos or frantic motion.
I want to show them that quality time is what is most important to me. I want to show them to cherish each moment,
that life is a gift,
that these are the days we’ll never get back and we get to spend them with care.
To live intentionally present, let’s spend our days with our priorities in mind first.
The rest will fall into place. I promise.
5. Finding (and remembering) my why.
To live intentionally present, I must remember why do I do what I do. What is my God-given purpose in life? What are my God-given gifts and talents — and where am I putting them to use? Or, put another way, what is my life’s “mission statement”?
Asking and answering these questions help me align what is most important to me. It ensures that I’m never spinning my wheels, wasting time on unnecessary projects or things that, in the long run, won’t really matter.
By finding my why, and reminding myself of it over and over, I’m putting my main priority first. Always.
Do you know your why? If you don’t, take some time and prayerfully think through the questions I just listed. Once you know it, write your why down, in one sentence if possible. Then place it somewhere you can see it every day.
When any opportunity presents itself, first read your why and ask yourself if the opportunity lines up with that why. If it does, go for it. If it doesn’t, ask yourself if you have the time and resources to make it happen and if it’s worth saying no to something else to say yes to this opportunity.
For example, my why is to raise my boys to become strong, Godly men of faith. That’s it. That’s why I am on this earth. Everything I do, every decision I make, ideally lines up with my why.
Yours will probably look different. That’s okay. Figure out what your why is, then live it out in earnest. After all, it’s what God designed you for.
Living life intentionally present is mindfully choosing how you will spend your time. When you do that, you remove the out-of-control from the situation and insert purposeful choice. You are no longer a victim to your time or priorities, but fully in control of each and every decision you make.
Remember that super frustrating, little blogging project I was working on? I came back to it over a week later, sat down at my computer, opened my files, and – click – wondrously set up the entire project without any problems, other than taking the time to actually complete it.
It wasn’t magic; it was time away. It was refreshing my mind. It was stepping back from the situation. It was readjusting my priorities.
It was being intentionally present.
It takes dedication and a conscious effort to get here. But your life, and that of your family, will thank you for it. They will be so much better off for it. It’s worth the shift.
Mom, you got this.
What are some things you do to live your life intentionally present? I’d love to hear them!
How to Live an Intentionally Present Life is a guest post written by Alicia Hunter of Turquoise Grace. Alicia is a firm believer in family travel, a good cup of coffee, and raising her four boys to become strong Godly men. You can find her at Turquoise Grace, blogging about all things raising boys with a coffee mug in hand, a baby in her lap, and a pile of laundry at her feet.