One night last week I woke up anxious about a task I’d left undone at work, something that might cause problems for other people. Full of tension, I was unable to stop thinking about the problem I’d created.
Then I remembered I was a Zen practitioner. I decided to apply my Zen to the situation.
“This is all there is.” I realized that the past was gone, and the future—when the consequences might occur—did not yet exist. Only the present moment, including my sensations of anxiety and regret, was real. If I wanted to take action to reduce future problems, that would be fine, but otherwise, the only sensible thing was to accept and witness my discomfort in the present.
Now I often remind myself: “This is all there is.” I strive to appreciate each moment of my life.