In this article and the video above, I wanna share something with you as a bit of an experience, which is probably gonna sound a little bit mental and ridiculous and obvious. But just for a second I wanna try and connect with what’s really behind the obviousness, because that’s the whole point.
I’m doing an event at the moment in London and it’s a lunch break, and I’ve just taken a walk, I’m in Canary Wharf. I just looked out over the water, and I was standing there for a couple of minutes, and it took a couple of minutes for the voice in my head to chill out a little bit and stop the dialogue of oh people are looking at me, you look weird, what are you doing just standing staring out over the water, and all this kind of stuff. After a couple of minutes the voice settled down, I settled down, and I stood there for a couple of minutes. And the reason I was standing there was an exercise that we’re doing in the event at the moment to do with really getting present in the moment, and it’s called being, in the terminology of the event.
The point is to really engage with how much of life we don’t see and we don’t experience. And how much we’re caught up in what’s happening inside us, what’s happening internally.
So I’m looking out over the water on this bridge and I suddenly realised, it literally blew my mind, that I don’t see reflections in water, or I hadn’t seen reflections in water. You know you walk over a bridge and you look at the bridge, and below the bridge there’s water, and that’s obvious. And because of the obviousness of that I don’t even perceive what’s going on with the water, it’s just water, it’s dismissed instantly, it’s obvious. And as I’m looking over the water and I suddenly notice the reflection, and I start experiencing the reflection, I was just literally blown away in that moment by how incredibly beautiful this reflection was.
A train went over the other bridge, that you might be able to see in the distance there, a train went over the other bridge, and it was bright red. And the bright red train that was reflecting in the water just created this like incredible shimmering glass-like effect, and I’m looking out over this view, and suddenly noticing that the entire world and everything that’s in it is completely duplicated into it’s mirror image in the reflection.
As I say this it sounds so blatantly obvious. We all know that water reflects. But just the realisation in that moment of how I don’t actually see what’s right in front of my face in the world. I’ve already decided, before even literally seeing it, I’ve already decided what I’m expecting to see. Ah water, I know what water looks like, it’s just water, so I don’t even see it. And in that moment I actually stopped and I looked, and I was there. I was in that moment, and I just saw what was actually in front of me, and it was like holy crap this is incredible.
It made me realise how much we miss. How much we don’t experience. You know how much we just assume is the way that it is, when we never experience life as it is that we’re living in in this moment.
How much of the time that we’re going through life are we future pacing with worries and anxiety and things we need to do and blah, blah, blah, or living in the past of what we should have said or what we should have done, or that thing we regret or that time we did this.
We’re always bouncing everywhere except now. We’re not experiencing now. I know it sounds profoundly, ridiculously obvious, I absolutely get that, and I agree with that. But that’s the whole point. If we can see beyond the obviousness of what’s in front of us in life, and what we assume life is, it’s absolutely mind blowing what opens up beyond that. So as an exercise, just take a moment, just wherever you are, to truly experience what is happening in this moment.
If you can connect with that and step outside of the internal dialogue like what we’re feeling, what we’re thinking, what the little voice in our head is saying, if we can move beyond that and just experience, it’s absolutely incredible what is there right in front of our face.
So hope that perspective helps create a little something, a little opening, a little window into what truly matters, which is experiencing and living life now. Be in the now, experience the now, live your life as is, as it is, and you will start to see a whole new world open up in front of your eyes.