Inventing the Future: Where are you right now?

“Now” may be one of the most overused words in advertising: Act now! Order now! Sign up now! Buy now! Book now! Apply now! But, how well do we use ‘now’ it in our own lives?

We’re always working ON something. We’re always moving TOWARD something. We’re PREPARING. We’re ANTICIPATING. We’re REACTING, not acting. That’s why Jenni Prokopy began a be here now blog in 2009. The blog was created for a 30 day experiment where Jenni challenged herself to soak up and share one ‘exact moment’ each day.

“More than ever, today we have a million things trying to take us away from the moment,” Prokopy said. “Email, kids, boyfriends, school, work, friends, weather, car repairs, workouts, shopping, family drama, errands, bills, Facebook (and Twitter, and MySpace, and Flickr, and FriendFeed…argh!)…the list is seemingly endless.”

Sometimes, we need to spend time just ‘being’ — instead of being motivated, being prepared or being engaged.

A man should learn to detect and watch that gleam of light which flashes across his mind from within, more than the lustre of the firmament of bards and sages. Yet he dismisses without notice his thought, because it is his. – Ralph Waldo Emerson

We have 1,000s photographs stored in iPhoto. Each one captures a moment in our lives with our kids, family and friends.  When I look at the photographs, there are times when I’m nostalgic. There are times I want to recapture the moments.  There are times I want to relive the memories. There are other times when I ask myself,”Did I lived those moments in each photograph well enough?”

Watching one of my daughters’ school concerts through the viewfinder of a video camera isn’t not the same as watching it without a camera.  Using a camera is all about capturing moments for the future — not enjoying the moment. ‘In the moment’ you don’t give a crap about the lighting, the background, or how your hair looks.

Maybe we need to spend more time living photographs…  instead of taking them.

Be here now

This song, by Ray LaMontagne, inspired Jenni Prokopy’s blog.  What does it inspire you to do?

This post is #17 in a series for #Trust30, a 30-day writing challenge that encourages participants to look within and trust themselves. It’s an opportunity to reflect on ‘now’, and to create direction for the ‘future’. Prompts from inspiring thought-leaders guide participants on the writing journey.

Credits: Photo by McAWilliams.