Presence makes it easier
– to be aware of one’s feelings;
– to choose or change them at will;
– to choose to be happy, since seldom is anything actually happening “here and now” to be upset about.
We got called into the shower, and this guy cut in front of me to get to the clothes window, and he was taking a long, long time. An eternity. Now, me? I finish at the clothes window in an instant. (Related: Practical advantages of being a nice guy.) So it made it easier for me to grouse that this ay-ho was taking so damn long.
I looked over at the shower bench. One guy had taken up half the bench with a mountain of clothes; there’s no need for that, since one can leave all one’s clothes (but for what one has on) at one’s bunk. Someone else had put his boots on the shower bench, meaning he was destined to leave muddy boot-prints on there for the next guy.
I was not a very happy camper.
However, keeping my attention here and now, I had the wherewithal to not get too upset about these irritations.
It would have been different had I been “absent,” stewing over some grievance, say, calling down God’s wrath on Darren Wilson. That would have drained me of the energies I had need of, to deal with here and now.
Presence makes everything about life easier.