The Challenge To Unplug

One of my goals every day is to stay present… focus on what is right in front of me.  John O’Leary does a great job in this piece of reminding us what is important.

“The present
moment is filled with joy and happiness. If you are attentive, you will
see it.” – Thich
Nhat Hanh [Tweet
It was a busy week. 

I spoke seven times in five cities, in four states spanning three times
zones. I’d left early Monday; it was now Friday afternoon.

I was a bit
exhausted and thrilled to be home.

I kissed my wife and grabbed my kids. Giving Beth the gift of alone time and
myself the gift of playtime, I loaded my kids into the car and took them to
a park.

My second born,
Patrick, was in a car seat directly behind and telling me all about his
He’s got big brown eyes, long eyelashes, a sweet
disposition and it was great to hear about his day.

And yet at some point…

…my mind……started to drift.

Beth and I had a dinner party that evening; traveling during the week meant
I was buried in emails; I had to prepare for events the following week; and
I had a….

And while I’m
thinking about all these things that I have to do, places I need to go,
tasks I must complete, a little voice behind me cut through my
self-chatter, and said:

“Dad, why aren’t you listening to me? Why aren’t you paying attention?”

My friends, he’s strapped into a Nascar-like 5-point-car seat, the kid
can’t move. He’s positioned directly behind me, and from the reflection on
a 1 inch rear-view mirror, this little man knew I wasn’t fully engaged.

And he was right.

You know, too
frequently we confuse being out of bed with being awake. [Tweet
We confuse talking with someone with
actually hearing what they are saying; and we confuse being there with
actually paying attention.

In order to actually see, actually listen, actually be present and actually
be awake, it’s critical to remove the things that distract you and keep you
from ‘paying attention’ in your relationships, in your work, and in your

So let go of
yesterday’s regrets. Put away tomorrow’s planning. And wake up to the
amazing miracle of living on fire for today. [Tweet

Monday Morning

Unplug today from all your social apps.
From the games you play on your phone.
From the TV that soaks up your night and
the busyness of just doing things to do things. 
plug into being actively engaged with the little ones in your life,
look unflinchingly and lovingly into your
partner’s eyes, have real conversations with your co-workers, take a
walk in nature, seek actively the beauty of life all around you.

This is your
day. Live inspired.

John O’Leary

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