Remain Present Even When You're Full of Wanderlust

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It probably wouldn’t surprise you to find out that I spend a lot of my time daydreaming about faraway places and traveling to dream locations. Usually, this isn’t a huge problem, but recently I’ve noticed I have problems living in the present. Wanderlust consumes me and sometimes I’m so busy dreaming about my next trip that I can’t focus on the one I am currently on.

With the end of my senior year of college quickly approaching, I’ve been struck with how quickly time passes. In moments like this, I realize how often I let moments slip by without fully enjoying them. I’m so focused on what’s next that I don’t appreciate and observe what is happening right in front of me. Then, when I return from my trip I spend hours looking at my photos trying to remember what it felt like to actually be there.

In order to appreciate what’s happening in here and now, I have tried to force myself to fully observe and appreciate each moment of my adventures. I try to limit the number of photos I take, so that I’m not experiencing the trip from behind my phone screen or from behind my camera lens. I close my eyes and experience the moment with all of my senses. I focus on the sights and sounds around me, but I also focus on how I’m feeling within—the excitement and awe of this moment. I encourage you to really taste the food, smell the ocean, and listen to the sound of the accents around you.

While you’re goal is to focus on the present, you have to remind yourself that its okay if your mind wanders to other things, people, or even future trips. We live in a fast pace, future focused world, and it takes a lot of practice to be able to focus on the present moment. Do your best to enjoy the current moment, but don’t feel too guilty if you take some time to daydream about adventures to come.