I believe in living in the present. This impulse to worry about things that have already or have yet to happen is what creates mental chains to keep you confined.
As graduation approaches, a thought had popped into my mind. The thought of possibly never seeing any of the people I’ve come to know as my closest friends ever again after we have completed our high school days. I’ve been so used to seeing these people everyday, never once even thinking about what could happen after this is all over. But with everyone constantly reminding us we’re gonna be seniors next year, it’s kinda difficult to think about anything but life after graduation.
This thought put me in a stump. It put me in a place where I constantly was worried that I would never see these guys ever again, so I ironically stopped hanging with them because I was clouded by that thought. I would instead spend my free time thinking to myself, what could we possibly do to keep us intact in the future.
I decided to go to my dad for advice to which he first replied “stop it.” I just asked him how he felt knowing he’d never be able to see his high school mates once they graduated. Then he told me something I hope I wasn’t going to hear: “you’ll just move on and find new friends.” Is that really it? Are we all just bound to “move on”?
I recall seeing a video online to which I see as the turning point of my journey. It was a video of a group of elders saying what they regretted doing or not doing when they were younger. While most said what you’d expect, a couple mentioned they regret “worrying so much.” This was the advice that stood out to me the most for it was the one that I most connected with. Those elders recalled spending so much time worrying that they caused unnecessary stress on themselves.
I found myself in that exact dilemma and according to the internet, I was now apart of those percent of Brits that spend an hour and fifty minutes worrying on a daily basis. I was spending so much of my time seeing what I could do to keep my friendships together in the future that I wasn’t seeing how I was actually doing the exact opposite to them right now.
I believe thinking about the future or the past causes a lot of unnecessary stress, which at times can be counter productive. Think about those times when you didn’t study for a test or do an assignment, you’ll find that you’re thinking about how much you could’ve done if you had committed to it last night more than you are actually trying to finish up studying.
This way of thinking about the past puts you in a position where you can’t progress because in a sense, you’re trying to see how you could change the past when it doesn’t work that way. The past has already happened. You’re too late and have no control over those events anymore. So why waste your time trying to budge an immovable object? It’s time to focus on the situation at hand and see what you can do right now to make up for it.
Instead of wasting time worrying about the uncertain future, I’ve found it’s much more rewarding to be cherishing the time I have with these people now before it’s too late. Becoming enfixed in something that hasn’t occurred yet and possibly might not even occur at all gives you tunnel vision and puts you in chains. It is what causes stress and worries. You don’t have control over the future or the past, the only thing you can do is live life right now to become free from the worrying that comes from trying to live anywhere but now. Thus, I believe in residing in the present, that way, the chains are lifted.