Research suggests (a study carried out by Psychologists at Harvard University) that the benefit of being able to live in the here-and-now is happiness.
There you go, you now know the secret to happiness; right?
Hmmm not so simple I hear you say, and you would be right. An article that quoted the said study, proposed that 46.7% of people think about something other than what they are actually doing, suggesting that almost half of us are not in the here-and-now. The study showed that people are most happy when they are partaking in activities that are most likely to consume the energy needed for thinking, like having sex, exercising and being in conversation. This is concerning when you think of how the importance of down-time and relaxation is encouraged when people, including me, discuss taking care of ourselves. I've heard clients say that when they get a long hot bath, listen to music or watch TV, this is when their thoughts creep in; and being left alone with their thoughts can indeed = unhappiness.
So where do we go with this information? For those of you who have negative thoughts, that struggle to appreciate something in the here-and-now because it is tainted by something in your past; I know you will be more than aware of this process but I wanted to bring it up here so that you also think about the possibility of confronting your past – there’s a blog by a good friend of mine where she also shares her thoughts on this. Alternatively, you could be thinking that it would be much easier to keep motivated and doing the things that take up your energy reserve for thinking but this will almost certainly result in burn-out.
In my view, life is too precious to keep running; whilst you run you do not have the time to take in all the precious opportunities that may well be on your door-step.
To be sincerely happy, you must stop but be comfortable with your internal world.