The normal mind is anaesthetized. I’ve come across people who do things they know they shouldn’t be doing but they appear not to be able to help it. I know people who insist on reading every single email the moment it arrives even though they’re supposed to be in the middle of something important and they know that the majority of the emails that they read are a complete and utter waste of time. Indeed, recent research tells us that the average response time to an email is a mere six seconds. I’ve also recently been told that the average distance an email is sent is two hundred metres! But getting back to the weird and wonderful behaviour of normal people, I know individuals who sit motionless in front of the television in the evening with the remote control controlling them, not the other way around. I’ve come across those who cannot help spending valuable time surfing the internet looking at porn when they don’t even get a kick out of it anymore – it’s just something that they seem to have to do. And, when a big news or sports story breaks, there are plenty of people who will go through the ritual of re-reading those stories from three or four different sources when they have better things to be doing. This list of the way in which normal people exist in this kind of bizarre, helpless, trance state is almost endless.

As children, we lived for the moment. As adults we barely turn up to the here and now. As the physiology of our brains changed as we moved through adolescence into adulthood, we became anaesthetized by the automatic responses and reactions that are fed by fifty thousand thoughts whizzing through our head every day. Many of those thoughts are random but many of them – the ones that particularly hold us in our normal everyday state of suspended animation – surface from the depths of our subconscious mind, where they have been squatting since childhood. As a result, we end up wasting time and energy on things that we know we shouldn’t be doing – not content to waste our time on things like I’ve already mentioned, we’re also hell-bent on worrying about things that we don’t want to happen, worrying about what kind of an impression we’re making (or not making!), worrying what other people think of us, worrying about things way off in the future that have nothing to do with the fact that life is lived in the present moment.

In the process, we’re simply not all there! We’re missing in action, absent without leave! And, until we grab a hold of our own state of mind, there’s no point in wondering why our life is ‘not-so-bad’ or in its current mess – it’s like that because it’s our own fault. You’ve got to be interested enough in your own well-being to turn up to your own life. Turning up isn’t half the battle – it’s actually all that you need to do. Because if you’re present, your very presence will make a difference, to your own focus, to your own effectiveness and to the impression that you make on those around you – they’ll notice the difference but won’t even be able to put their finger on what the difference is.

How do you turn up? How do you put in an appearance? Isn’t it obvious? Where is life lived? Where is the only place and time that you can be at any moment in time? Wherever you are, whatever you’re supposed to be doing – in the here and now. You’ve got to stop your mind from idling, you’ve got to stand up to your habitual ways and put a stop to your normal dead-from-the-neck-up state of mind forcing you to sit in front of that TV or PC, you’ve got to snap out of the trance you’re in. And the only way that you’ll do that is by paying attention to what is actually going on now. But, as a normal adult, you’re not used to doing that, so you’re going to have to go into training. Start by taking or making a few minutes each day to sit down where you won’t be disturbed and very mechanically look, feel, listen, smell and taste what’s going on. It has to be mechanical for a start – you’re going to have to relearn what it’s like to pay attention to the exhilarating sensory feast of the here and now – something that you haven’t done since you were a child. But if you do, you’ll snap out of your trance, you’ll wake up, smell the roses and realize the beauty and opportunity of today.

Author's Bio: 

Willie Horton has been enabling his clients live their dream since he launched is now acclaimed two-day Personal Development Seminars all the way back in 1996. His clients include top leaders in major corporations such as Pfizer, Deloitte, Nestle, Merrill Lynch, Wyeth, KPMG, G4S and Allergan together with everyone from the stay-at-home parent to sports-people. An Irish ex-banker and ex-accountant, he lives in the French Alps from where he travels the world as a much sought after motivational speaker and mentor. In 2008 he launched Gurdy.Net where is self-help seminars are now online. For more information visit Willie Horton’s Personal Development Website Gurdy.Net