flower-bouquet-422709_1280Most people spend a lot of their time drifting into the past or future. It’s crazy how much time they spend reliving past events that they can’t do anything about or worrying about things that haven’t happened yet. You may not realize it, but this makes it difficult, if not impossible, for you to appreciate the wonderful things that are happening around you.

Mindful people are more empathic, more exuberant and happier. Here are some practices to help you live a happier, more present life.

Focus on what’s in front of you

We do it all the time. You check on your social media account while cooking dinner. You send an email during a meeting or talk on the phone while walking. Most people think that we can get more things done when we multitask. But the truth is that you’re really not accomplishing much at all.

Whatever you’re doing, let your mind focus 100% on it. Focusing on one task a time will allow you to work with a clear mind. Remember, multitasking isn’t a positive trait; it is a bad habit that needs to be banished.

Be present both physically and mentally

If you are having dinner with your family, make sure that you’re present both physically and mentally. Put away your smartphone and stop checking your emails. Stop worrying about the report that needs to be submitted tomorrow. Stop thinking how badly this morning’s meeting went. You may not realize it, but this keeps you from being present with the people that deserve your full attention.

Don’t let these beautiful moments get drowned out by a cacophony of anxiety or self-consciousness. Bring your attention back to the moment and free yourself from the past and future thoughts that plague your mind.

Accept life as it is

Oftentimes, we tend to beat ourselves up for the mistakes that we committed. Other people worry too much about the things that have yet to come. Instead of mourning for the past or worrying about the future, accept life as it is.

Living in acceptance can have a dramatic impact on your emotional well-being. Learn to accept that everything happens as it should, now how you want it to be.

Develop an attitude of gratitude

Instead of focusing on the things that are lacking in your life, be grateful for everything you have. Every now and then, remember to stop and pay attention to the small things that make you happy. Notice the world around you. Be thankful for them. This will help you cultivate more positive experiences and positive emotions.