A client comes to me very upset and having severe anxiety about something. I calm her down by having her take a deep breath. I say to her;
"Where are you right now?
"In your office"
"Are you safe?"
"Think about the anxiety you had yesterday. Do you feel anxiety?"
"Think about what you just said about next week, does it make you anxious?"
"Come back to right now. You are sitting with me, in my office breathing and you feel comfortable correct?"
"Look at me, do you feel peace when you see me?"
"So why do you make a choice to go to the future?"
"I don't know I just do it."
"What if you just didn't do it?"
"That would be hard."
"Is it because you said so."
"Yeah I guess so."
"Is it because you automatically go there?"
"I did not think of that but yeah."
"Good, you just won half the battle."
"What's the other half?"
"Stay in the now!"
Did you know that 95% subconscious mind is on autopilot? We do almost everything by habit and unconscious habit at that. How do we break that? Recognizing it is part of the battle, the other part, simple, be present. By staying in the now, being mindful, we are creating a healthy habit. When we bounce over to the future or roll back onto the past we start a habit. Practicing how to stay present in the now is just creating a new habit. Of course it is easier said than done. The quickest way to get you to pay attention to the now is to simply breathe and pay attention to your breath. The wonderful thing about breathing is it will always lead you home to the now.