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People Who Plan for the Future, Live for Each Moment

Updated on January 21, 2018
Nadine May profile image

Nadine is from Cape Town and is both a visionary fiction author, an art therapist and a graphic designer. Loves gardening, reading & writing

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Living in the Moment

The title of this article may sound like lunacy, but my favorite investment is in my dreams and the stories around them, not in any investments or insurance.We are the co-creators of our lives.

Living in the moment has its rewards, but so does planning for the future. I feel it's okay to make plans and have dreams so long as we avoid thinking how it will all work out. Often people like me can drift off into my imagination during an activity, be it writing, designing graphics for this article or gardening, but I leave it up to the universe to decide the outcome.

We can be mindful of our present moment while planning for our future, so long as we are aware that daydreaming about fantasy lands will take us nowhere, (unless we are writing a fantasy movie script!)Whatever we are doing, we have to be in an awareness of it. When we are planning for the future, we must be aware of our thoughts and behavior in that moment.

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Greater Cape Town

Today January 2018 Capetonians and surrounding populations are finding themselves in a huge water shortage crisis. Why? Many people who 'could' plan for the future, did not do so, and now they are panicking. They stop living in the moment due to fear and anxiety!

  • Did landlords bother to install water tanks for their tenants? If not why not?
  • Some might genuinely not have had the money to invest in water tanks, due to lack of funds caused by having to pay off huge loans, but others are just to mean to spend money on others. These people will know who they are.

Who is to Blame?

To blame the government, teachers, bosses or our parents for our own lack of foresight is childish. Each adult individual MUST learn to take responsibility for their own lives and or step up.

Social media is rife with people who complain about the water situations in Cape Town, and yes some might be justified, but what did these people do for themselves?

There are sadly many people, like our older citizens and ill or handicapped people who rely on family, neighbors or friends to help them when the time comes for us to queue for our daily 25L of water. Many cannot carry that, let alone stand in line for it.

My respect goes to the people in rural areas who for years still have to walk for miles to collect water from a river, and do their washing by hand, while we have taken it for granted to open the taps in our homes.

See the positive in this situation. It might offer great job opportunities for people who are strong and have the time to stand in a queue with a clear written authority for whom they are collecting water.

For now all we can do is our part as individuals and hope that Mother Nature shows mercy.

Happiness Is Not A Destination. Happiness Is A Decision.

Decide On The Reality You Want To Live!” ― WesamFawzi

Popular Expressions

For some reason, it’s also becoming more 'popular' to not plan for the future, especially in spiritual groups. They all say: you can't live in the past, or in the future because they do not exist. Totally true but...Many people misunderstand these expressions. Instead they excuse themselves when things do not work out for them, because they allow the monkey mind syndrome take control of their life journey.

A human mind is a wandering mind and a wandering mind is an unhappy mind. The ability to think about what is not happening can be an emotional roller-coaster.

“The past is behind, learn from it. The future is ahead, prepare for it. The present is here, live it.”

― Thomas S. Monson

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Future Planning

While I enjoy the “moments” of everyday I can’t help but move my mind forward by envisioning the future. Why? For me, it becomes exhilarated to think about my possible future. Both living in the moment and picturing our future can rejuvenate us all.

My article about the grey water system we installed a year ago was an example. The enjoyment of the planning and doing has today many years later become a blessing. (Harvesting Rain & Grey water)

At all times pay attention to the present; surround yourselves with positive joyful people and things you love, because that way we are building a foundation for happiness.

“What matters is what we do with the life we have.”― Carrie Ryan, The Dark and Hollow Places

Visionary Story telling is a creative way to imagine a kind of future scenario. My very first novel was written in the 1995 - and published in 2001. How incredible to experience that my fiction story became a kind of vision board. Doing it for several years manifested in incredible changes in my life.

"What we can imagine we can make real" - Nadine May

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Living in the moment requires us to have hopes and dreams;something that keeps us going, something for us to work towards. If we have nothing to work towards then we tend to feel pretty useless.

Take travelling, or building a home, or planning a wedding. All these activities and many more, like writing a novel, they all need some form of planning. It’s impossible to live in the moment every second of every day without having awareness on how we got there. Those people get nothing done.

Dreams and aspirations are important in order to get us from one stage of our lives to the next, and then we can have moment s while enjoying the journey.Planning consciously for the future is one of the best tools to stay grounded in the present. How?

Planning IS a present-moment activity!

Mindfulness and Future Planning

Mindfulness is a mental state: awareness, attention, focus, presence, or vigilance. Mindfulness the basic human ability to be fully present, aware of where we are and what we’re doing.

By focusing one's awareness on the present moment, while calmly acknowledging and accepting one's feelings, thoughts, and bodily sensations, we become co-creators.

Whatever we are doing, we must be aware of it. When we are planning for the future, we must be the observer of our thoughts and behavior in that moment.

Mindfulness has been proven to increase focus, productivity, creativity as well as reduce stress. I f planning for the future is something you and I need to do, do it right now, then be present while doing it.

With mindful awareness, the flow of energy and information that is in our mind enters our conscious attention and we can both appreciate its contents and come to regulate its flow in a new way.

We can be mindful of our present moment while planning for our future while our mindfulness has intention, acceptance, and appreciation. That is the only place we can really live- in the present.

Be the silent watcher of your thoughts and behavior. You are beneath the thinker. You are the stillness beneath the mental noise. You are the love and joy beneath the pain — Eckhart Tolle


Conclusion

We can be present when consciously planning for the future (as opposed to being caught up, distracted and overwhelmed by thoughts of the future). Living in the moment for me means savoring the moments when we are actually living them.

It’s like soaking up the sunset without worrying about tomorrow because we took care by planning for the following sunset.

Nadine May

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    • Nadine May profile image
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      Nadine May 5 weeks ago from Cape Town, Western Cape, South Africa

      Thanks for your comment Bronwen. Everything happened for the best in the long run. The reality of clean drinking water has awakened a lot of people, especially in Cape Town who have taking actions.

    • BlossomSB profile image

      Bronwen Scott-Branagan 6 weeks ago from Victoria, Australia

      So sorry to hear about the dreadful water shortage in lovely Cape Town. Thank you for an interesting article, too. We do need to plan for the future and the present problem is certainly a reminder of the necessity.

    • Nadine May profile image
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      Nadine May 7 weeks ago from Cape Town, Western Cape, South Africa

      Thanks for your comment Nell. What we can imagine we can make real!!

    • Nell Rose profile image

      Nell Rose 7 weeks ago from England

      I hope I do this. Sometimes I do, other times I tend to drift off! lol! I am planning at the moment so its a do time! great stuff Nadine!

    • Nadine May profile image
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      Nadine May 2 months ago from Cape Town, Western Cape, South Africa

      I'm so with you Bill. My intent is to reach the nineties fit and in good health, living in my small cottage ( still has to be build) with my life partner on the top of our property.

    • billybuc profile image

      Bill Holland 2 months ago from Olympia, WA

      As I approach seventy years I still plan for the future. I am goal-oriented, and one goal is to live a long age. I believe a positive attitude, and staying active, will aid me in that goal...stay tuned! :)

    • Nadine May profile image
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      Nadine May 2 months ago from Cape Town, Western Cape, South Africa

      Many us us feel that possibility has not been explored Bronwen. All what we know is that we need to pay more and more for the water we are allowed.

    • BlossomSB profile image

      Bronwen Scott-Branagan 2 months ago from Victoria, Australia

      I didn't know about the underground river. That's interesting. We have them in some places here in Australia, too. Would the water be suitable to use in the Cape Town water crisis?

    • Nadine May profile image
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      Nadine May 2 months ago from Cape Town, Western Cape, South Africa

      Thank you for reading my article and your comment. Yes I like what you mentioned. It is a continuous process

    • Venkatachari M profile image

      Venkatachari M 2 months ago from Hyderabad, India

      A very beautiful article, Nadine. You explained it all so nicely.

      It's true that we need to live in present moments. But, at the same time learning from past experiences and planning smartly for future also. It is a continuous process. Learn from previous moment, work in the present moment, and be prepared to enter into the next moment wisely.

    • Nadine May profile image
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      Nadine May 2 months ago from Cape Town, Western Cape, South Africa

      I cannot promote this article on Facebook like all the other articles? Does anyone else have similar problems? It keeps saying page not could and I see another post image instead!

    • Nadine May profile image
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      Nadine May 2 months ago from Cape Town, Western Cape, South Africa

      What we imagine we can make real Devika. Plenty problems in SA but we try to be self contained as much as possible.

    • DDE profile image

      Devika Primić 2 months ago from Dubrovnik, Croatia

      Problems unsolved and still many issues with government. You make me think what everything has become in a beautiful place.

    • Nadine May profile image
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      Nadine May 2 months ago from Cape Town, Western Cape, South Africa

      Indeed you are so right. None of us can just only rely on governments or others...We all must take some responsibilities for our own water needs.

    • Nadine May profile image
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      Nadine May 2 months ago from Cape Town, Western Cape, South Africa

      Thank you Bronwen I believe that they get water from the underground river.

    • Nadine May profile image
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      Nadine May 2 months ago from Cape Town, Western Cape, South Africa

      Thanks, Linda this article was as a result of reading about people on Social media who are into blaming. In my mind, I have visions of a lush and green garden. At the moment we keep our garden alive with grey-water from showers, basins, and grey water from the washing machine washing with 4 Wellos Washing Balls once a week. ( no soap)

    • FlourishAnyway profile image

      FlourishAnyway 2 months ago from USA

      The water crisis you share is a potential for other parts of the world if we don’t conserve.

    • BlossomSB profile image

      Bronwen Scott-Branagan 2 months ago from Victoria, Australia

      Thank you for the great philosophical advice. I do hope the water problem is solved soon - I have happy memories of Cape Town and especially of the beautiful public gardens which must be suffering at the moment.

    • AliciaC profile image

      Linda Crampton 2 months ago from British Columbia, Canada

      "Plan for the future, live for each moment" sounds like an excellent motto for life. Thanks for sharing your thoughts, Nadine. I enjoyed reading them. I hope the water crisis in your part of the world is solved soon.

    • Nadine May profile image
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      Nadine May 2 months ago from Cape Town, Western Cape, South Africa

      Hi, Eric, I find that while gardening I'm very much in the moment, so who knows the garden does call us for that reason? To be in the moment, but at the same time feeling grateful for having a garden.

    • Ericdierker profile image

      Eric Dierker 2 months ago from Spring Valley, CA. U.S.A.

      Really good stuff here. A nice read before I garden, no not my children my Bougainvilleas. Or is it me that gardens me?

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