One thing I have noticed more and more is how many people are not truly present when you are with them. Yes we all have daydreaming moments or get distracted, we all get tired and bored. But are we truly present for the times and people we should be there for.
I am lucky enough to have grown up without a mobile phone, without a laptop or a tablet. I spent my teenage years with people, and in solitude. I spent my teenage years talking to horses and dogs, and about horses and dogs!! However this taught me the importance of being present. Riding horses or interacting with animals allows you to appreciate the unconditional love they give us. They know just where we are at all times that we are in their vicinity. Even when they seem relaxed they are aware of our presence. If you are a dog owner how often has your deeply sleeping dog opened their eyes as you leave the room? Or been waiting for your return minutes before you turn into your street. They are often so attuned to our whereabouts they know before they hear us when we get home.
The opposite is often true of humans…even when they appear to have their attention fully on us they are often distracted by thoughts of things to do or wants and desires. Or worse the couples you see at a table in a restaurant on their phones rather than communicating with each other. The families that sit in a living room, with both the TV and social media distracting from real communication. How often do we actually give our full attention to a person in the way we do our phones or tablets?
I love the practice of yoga partly because it returns us to ourself. We learn to connect to our inner self, to look inward not to get distracted by external things. We learn to switch off from other peoples opinion and to sooth with our breath and our movements. To be fully conscious of every part of each breath and each movement and how they affect us.
I think that the practice of yoga teaches us to be more present in life, in our relationships, our interaction and with our self. The most important thing it teaches us however, is to give our dogs the full attention that they so willingly give to us!!!