Expanding in the now to embrace the learning curves of life


“The world we see that seems so insane is the result of a belief system that is not working.  To perceive the world differently, we must be willing to change our belief system, let the past slip away, expand our sense of now, and dissolve the fear in our minds.” –William James

Many sweet times of late, personally and professionally, occurred when I chose to stay in the moment.

By disciplining myself to be still and sit without judgment, I allowed myself to be expanded by the unknown and move beyond initial discomfort or angst.

People’s quirks that challenged me became hints that identified my own flaws, for what we see before us is often a mirror of our own thoughts, beliefs and ways of being.  For example, not liking another person’s frantic behavior was a sign to me that I was running around too much and needed to slow down, focus and rest.

Other times when I felt rubbed the wrong way by another, I became clearer of my own needs and increasingly learned to voice them.   Highly tuned into the quiet of the now, I knew what I had to say, detached from the outcome.  The next moment, or the one after that, would eventually give me the discerning wisdom to evaluate whether another can “see,” “hear,” and “honor” me.  Often, there needs to be some chill time, or spaces before engaging again, for adjustments to be made, which are why I personally believe the best relationships are grown with a mix of togetherness and solitude.

Sometimes, the more highly triggered we are by another, the more likely the wound originated in the past, not necessarily the present situation.  The partner angering you now may be representative of the parent, or someone else, who did not love you in the ways you needed to feel supported or cared for in earlier years.

When focused on the past, ignited by conditioning from earlier belief systems, many of us may flee from less-than-perfect situations, giving our ego’s need to be right, and in control, all the power.  Had we stayed instead of running, we may have changed a pattern or belief forever to truly create anew.

Or, we may induce anxious states by demanding and projecting onto the present moment, future ideal scenarios– impatient and anxious that they are yet to be fulfilled.  Had we let the dreams unfold, we may have enjoyed more of the process of creation, instead of feeling resentment that we could not will our desired outcomes to happen on our timetable.

The now, on the other hand, is like an open lesson plan, where all you need to know is delivered, moment by moment, including what actions to take next.

Plus, by concentrating on just “being” with others, we can receive great gifts.  Each one of us has a unique offering to give.

Here are some gifts I received from others by staying in the now, letting go of ego and allowing in spirit’s deliverance of exactly what I needed in the moment:

  • Strategic perspectives
  • Healing touch
  • Carpooling help
  • Technical expertise

By observing the people before us with loving kindness, knowing that they, too, are on a journey, we can forgive them for their mistakes or shortcomings.  And, in the truest, deepest sense of loving, we can honor the individuals before us as they are, not how we wish them to be.

In turn, they may return the same levels of acceptance to us, freeing all to delight more in the expansion of the now.

Chris Young’s photo of the arch into the beautiful Brookgreen gardens in Murrells Inlet, South Carolina, depicts the openness and plush beauty of life we can experience when we choose to live in the moment.  Chris, a friend with a passion for photography, has captured many moments of stillness through his art work that have helped center me in “the now.”  He and his wife, Susy, have played an extraordinarily loving role in the unfolding of my life in new ways.


Write out the statements below long-hand a few times each day. Then, repeat out loud as frequently as you desire, but especially in the morning and at night when in restful states:

1.  I allow myself to be present to the moment, detaching from reviewing the past or projecting onto the future.

2.  I allow myself to be still, with acceptance and non- judgment, in the presence of others.

3.  I allow myself to embrace each moment as a new beginning.


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 To learn more, email gailjones@claimyourworthiness.com or call 978-887-1911.

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