“When you love someone, the best thing you can offer is your presence. How can you love if you are not there?” Thich Nhat Hanh
There was a long period of my life – from the age of approximately 25-37 – that I lovingly now refer to as the “Next, Next, Next Period” of my life. I was constantly striving and filling my life: the next job, the next promotion, the next big project, the next dinner party, the next new decorative piece for my home, the next vacation…you get my point.
The real problem with that is that when we’re always focused on the next thing or something in the future, we’re never really living in the moment.
This meant that I wasn’t present for the most important people in my life, nor was I present for myself and my own needs.
I now believe that our presence is the greatest gift that we can give to someone – including ourselves – because it demonstrates to that person that we hear them, we see them and that they really matter to us.
One of my mentors, Gayle Larsen told me that her most beautiful gift was her ability to be present for others and for herself. Everybody just wants to be seen and know that they matter.
What does the gift of presence look like for you?