Pausing to be present

Pausing to be present

When was the last time you paused in your day to be truly present and grateful? We can get so caught up in all the demands of taking care of kids, work and managing a household. Our lives slip past are a frightening pace. Our kids morph and grow before our eyes and we know that they will be an adult and gone all too soon. Or maybe it is just me that forgets to be present?

Being present doesn’t happen automatically despite our best intentions. I have learned that this is a skill that needs to be planned for and practised. Evaluate what you are trying to cram into the day that may be preventing you from being present. Try setting a reminder on your phone to pause at set times during the day to notice what is happening around you. Use sticky notes around your house as a visual reminder.

Practise being present

Let’s practise together now using this simple exercise.

  • What are 5 things you can see?
  • Now find 4 things you can touch or feel.
  • What are 3 things you can hear?
  • Now find 2 things you can smell.
  • Lastly, what is one thing you can taste?

How do you feel after doing that? Was there anything you noticed that surprised you? This simple exercise is a great one to do with your kids too. They may come up with some answers that you wouldn’t have noticed on your own. Kids are so much better at being in the moment than we are as adults. Learn from them.


The practice of being present often leads to gratitude. I take more notice of the details of my life when my mind is not focused on the future or past. I can put aside the worries and demands for a few moments. It gives space for me to be thankful for those small moments that I would otherwise have missed completely. 

Now, put down whatever device you’re using to read this and go be present with those you care about or notice something new to be grateful for.

Jodi Koepke
MOPS Australia Managing Director

Jodi spends her days sharing words of encouragement for women in leadership, finding her way through the beautiful mess of parenting and relationships, and geeking out on technology. She is the author of the book ‘Stepping Up In Leadership’, a speaker and the Managing Director for MOPS Australia. Find more inspiration at

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