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NOVEMBER 2011: PRESENCE
P1000524_1_1.JPGn. presence (prez-uhns)
Being present is difficult to achieve in everyday life, let alone in the midst of traveling, holidays, and family get togethers. However, cultivating a sense of presence - rooting yourself to the here and now - can be both a tool for daily life and also an antidote for holiday stress.

The path to presence is through breath.
When you feel drawn away from this present moment either by activities or thoughts, you can bring yourself back through a simple breath exercise: Breathe in and say to yourself "I am breathing in;" breathe out and say "I am breathing out." On your next round of breath, try "I am here" coupled with "This is now."

Our breath is our constant connection to the here and now, and our "presence" is rooted in its flow. The next time you feel tension rising or yourself being drawn away from your true self, slow your breath down. Your breath, and in turn your presence, allow you to be present for the people in your life - both loved ones and strangers - as you offer them your truest, fullest loving self.