I don't recall the last time I was fully in the moment for anything. I could probably blame social media and our excessive need to constantly be aware of everything with marginal attention instead of being fully immersed into one thing, but I've definitely witnessed my peers juggling this a lot better than I have. It also very well could be residue from my investment banking days, where I felt "on-call" at all times, requiring me to focus on a multitude of tasks and deals at once, while having an innate fear that more was coming down the pipeline. It's only exasperated my need to efficiently use any moment of free time I have and I'll sadly admit that no matter how I use my free time now, I feel an urge that there's probably a better way to use it. Unfortunately, I don't think this residue is disappearing any time soon. Additionally, and I'm not sure how to say this without sounding like an insane Social Darwinist, but there seems to be a high correlation with being South Korean and being obsessive with online and instant activities - we definitely are an impatient group of folks.
Aside from the Bryan-specific reasons listed above, I don't think it's an understatement to say that no one really lives in the moment these days. There's so much information flow at all times, so much to miss out on and an everlasting push to be hyper efficient and multi-task oriented. If we're not watching Netflix while entering in client data with the stove cooking dinner waiting for the plumber to come fix the toilet, we're living life wrong. Even as I'm writing this post, I'm not fully focused on putting my thoughts on paper - I'm wondering if the time I spent writing this was worth it or it could've been better for me if I spent calling my mom or doing the dishes instead. My physical attention and efforts could be 99% there, but my mind is always off a million different avenues doing something else.
I think the inherent fear associated with acknowledging this about myself is that it's not something that's going to magically disappear in the future. That's with most things in life as you enter your 20's and you slowly start to realize that there's no "graduation moment" into adulthood where you lose all your poor childhood habits. I think there's an expectation growing up (and by growing up I mean throughout your life) that the carb-addiction you have, the shopping sprees you put yourself into and in this case, the inability to live in the moment, will all go away once you reach a certain age or life milestone. It's probably why we're often heavily disappointed by our parents or other important adult figures in their life when they exhibit human behavior because we have this innate expectation that they should've fixed this by now.
Living in the moment is at the top of my list for the latter half of this year in terms of habits I want to forcefully implement and I'm regretting not starting sooner. Like most things, I'm getting the feeling that practice can lead to a routine and eventually I can do it without thinking about it (how meta is it that I have to think about not thinking about other things and that very act of thinking defies my goal to live in the moment!) Deleting Instagram and not being worried about what variation of a salad my friends are eating in New York right now might be the first tangible step or finding and solidifying friendships with those that are local and also practicing living in the moment may be a longer term solution. With hope that you are reading this with 100% of your undivided attention, thanks for living in the moment.