It may go back all the way to Confucius, but really, it’s impossible to find a source for this. Then again, it’s such a truism that it almost doesn’t matter:
“Wherever you go, there you are.”
I love this quote because it’s both useful and universal advice. It’s also the title of a mindfulness book by Jon Kabat-Zinn. In it, he says:
“Meditation is the only intentional, systematic human activity which at bottom is about not trying to improve yourself or get anywhere else, but simply to realize where you already are.”
You may not be a meditator or a cautious skeptic of the practice, but this idea to try to be where we already are is one we can all benefit from. We’re all guilty of time travel.
We sit at our desk at work and fantasize about retiring on the beach or, at the very least, our next vacation. We scroll through Instagram, lost in the memories of those in whose pictures we used to be.
It feels good sometimes, but it’s not where happiness and meaning truly live. Neither do we. All of those things can only be found in the present. So that’s where we must return to. Always.
Of course, we’re not perfect. We’ll keep failing. But that’s okay, as long as we make the effort. To do so, I find it helps to turn the truism into a piece of sage advice. If wherever you go, there you are, then…
“Wherever you are, be all there.”
Really try to embrace right now. This works on so many levels:
When we travel, we should embrace the places we visit, rather than just rushing through our sightseeing checklist.
When we go on a date, we should pay attention to what our flame says, listen closely, and let them finish.
When we’re at work, our job is to be of service to the larger mission of our company, so we should set our ego aside and pour our heart into our tasks.
Life is not about who you could be or who you might have been. It’s about who you choose to be right now.
Wherever you go, there you are. And wherever you are, be all there.
About Forgiveness Wednesday: No matter how the week starts, by Wednesday, we’ve had enough time to kick ourselves. We’re human. We make mistakes, we regret them, and we blame ourselves. But the only way we can keep moving on is if we forgive ourselves and those around us. So every Wednesday, forgiveness is what we’ll practice.
Let’s be kind to ourselves so we can succeed.
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