"Remember To Live In The Present"

Before I left for abroad, my dad gave me some advice that has been on my mind since I have been in Italy. "Remember to live in the present."

At first I thought to myself, "Yeah, okay whatever," but now after having lived in Italy for a full week, I find myself constantly thinking of my dad's advice. The idea of living in the present seems so simple, yet I feel like not that many people do it. I am a college student living in Europe for four months of my life, and I think if there ever is a time that I really need to live in the present; it would be now. 

Europe is so different from America, and it is so easy to get caught up in making plans for the future, but I have begun to realize that even though sometimes you absolutely HAVE to plan for the future (next semester classes, resumes, internships, scholarship, trips, etc), it really can take away from the present. Living in Europe makes traveling a lot easier and cheaper to other European countries and it makes traveling on the weekend so efficient. However, to travel on the weekends involves some planning for the future, which is 100% okay, until I realize I wasted three days sitting inside of an apartment planning other trips rather than out exploring and enjoying the city that is right outside my window. I don't want to spend every day waiting for Friday, rather it is more important for me to get out and make the most of every day.

When you're taken out of your element or comfort zone it's also easy to get caught up in thinking about the past. When you're surrounded by people who are not speaking the same language as you and who are just behaving overall differently than anything you have known, it may cause you to crave the life you knew. The past is the past. Complaining will not change anything and when I think about it, complaining is one of the most selfish things I can do and one of the quickest ways to ruin my mood and the mood of everyone who is in my presence. Complaining is the easiest way to not live in the present. Yes I miss my bed, but that should not stop me from enjoying my time abroad and I should not spend the time that I am here complaining about it either. 

Living in the present is about enjoying what you have when it is right in front of you. I don't want to take a single day for granted while I am abroad because I know how quickly my time here will fly by. And the same goes for when I am back at college, rather than wishing away the weekend I am going to start living in the moment and enjoy everything that I can.