As a police officer, I’m frequently encountering people who refuse to listen…
No matter what is happening to them, whether they’re getting arrested or getting a speeding ticket, they keep trying to talk me into letting them go.
The talk and talk and talk, hardly letting me get a word in edgewise…
They tell me all about their problems, where they were or where they’re going…
But these people aren’t acknowledging the situation they’re in, mentally, they’re not present.
Which brings me to my point…
To get the most out of any situation you’re in, you must live in the moment…
Or as I like to call it, “Be where you are.”
Sounds like a no-brainer, right? Be where you are…
But an awful lot of people don’t understand it and don’t live this way.
A well-known dance instructor by the name of Martha Graham said, “All that is important is this one moment in movement. Make the moment vital and worth living. Do not let it slip away unnoticed and unused.”
In my opinion, this couldn’t be said any better.
But Martha’s wisdom applies to more than just dance; you’ll miss an awful lot of what life has to offer if you don’t live each and every moment.
Let me give you an example…
A friend of mine recently took a trip around the world, visiting many different countries and destinations.
Sounds great, right?
The only problem is, my friend is a meticulous planner, scheduling everything down to the smallest detail…
And once she arrived at a destination, she never took the opportunity to experience the moment because she immediately started planning for her next location.
Imagine what she missed out on by sitting in her hotel…
Myself, I like to be where I’m at.
When I’m out cycling, I’m in the moment.
I’m a cyclist, I’m not a swimmer, runner, police officer or anything else. I’m on my bike and aware of my surroundings, I’m focused on being the best cyclist I can be…
And I try to carry that through to the rest of my life.
When my dog Jake and I are out for a walk, I enjoy each and every moment, I’m taking in the surroundings and what’s happening…
I push the thoughts about work, bills, trips or anything else out of my head, instead, I take a page out of Jake’s book and just relax and be in the now.
When I’m on duty, I’m a police officer, I’m not a cyclist or anything else. Police officers who are not alert or living in the moment are setting themselves up for tragedy.
Many officers meet their demise because they have become complacent. Trust me, I pay attention, I don’t plan on getting blind-sided by some angry bad guy.
My plan is to go home at the end of my tour of duty and not to the hospital or the morgue.
Be where you are, life is happening all around you, enjoy it, take it all in.
Don’t just skim over what you see, look at it and appreciate it.
Before we say goodbye for another week, I wanted to share with you one last example of living in the moment.
I was patrolling on a side street and stopped to say hello to one of the local residents. He said he always walks to the beach in the evening to enjoy the beauty that God has given us.
I asked him what he looks for on his way to the beach, and he just stared at me, asking me what I was talking about.
I asked him if he looked at the trees and foliage, stopped to pet a dog or can, or even stop to talk to a neighbor.
He shook his head.
He wasn’t aware of his surroundings, he couldn’t tell me about what he had seen or if anything had changed in the neighborhood because when he steps out of his house, mentally, he’s already at the beach.
After a brief discussion he said he understood, since then I’ve seen him out petting the neighborhood dogs and cats and even playing catch with his neighbors son.
Remember, be where you are, enjoy and appreciate every moment, don’t let it slip away unnoticed and unused.
As always, never say “I’m too old” or “I can’t”… because you’re not and you can.