The Gift of Being Present

A warm welcome to all of my loyal readers and to new friends who are joining us for the first time. Last time we talked about defining your why, and today I want to give you my next tip for making your Dash count. I want to talk to you about the gift of being present. This is a very dear topic to me. We are so used to multi-tasking and it has become such a normal part of life. It is possible, but what does it look like when we talk about being present? I want to give you some practical examples of what it means to be present. If I started talking to you and you were on your phone at the time, being present means that you would simply stop looking at your phone, look up and talk to me. If you are watching TV or on your laptop and your spouse approaches you, you need to just disconnect and give them attention. That is being present.

The gift of listening

The other thing that I always think about when we talk about present is the gift of listening. This is something I am still working on myself. Most of the time we are just listening to respond, when truly we should be listening just to listen, to understand. We often spend a lot of time forming our responses in our head when somebody else is talking, because we want to be prepared. When we do this though, we can often miss the key things that they need to communicate. Listen to the person, see what they have to say, and if you have to respond, then you can respond. You can truly practice being present by paying attention to the person. Listen with your body and not just your ears. Turn towards them, lean in and make them feel that they are really being listened to. Don’t interrupt them, and repeat back what they’ve said if you need to. This will truly show them that you have made the effort to listen and understand what they have to say, and they will appreciate this.

listening to understand being present

Making time for family

Yesterday was a big moment for me when I think about listening. My daughter and I were out and about doing stuff and we having a conversation about the business of life. We were talking about my past life of working nights, and she said, “mummy, you were never present”. This really surprised me! For a moment I thought to myself, “wait, did she hear me give a presentation about that or does she really mean it?”. I asked, “what do you mean?” and she said “yes, you were home, you always knew what was going on, but you were always sleeping. You were not really there and you never got to do a lot of things with me.” There was a moment where I thought “ok, yes, I know this”. Then my daughter added “but now you are here, and you are present. You are always awake and you are spending more time with me. That’s what counts.”

Be present

So what I am trying to remind you all of, is to be present. Being present doesn’t mean you are just living under the same roof or riding in the car. I want you to have conversations. Pay attention to your loved ones. Pay attention to whoever you are talking to, your colleagues, your friends. You should pay attention to them because it really does matter. They will always notice if you are not fully present. To remind myself, I wrote a note saying that I may not be able to redeem the moments and times that I lost with my daughter back then. But I truly am able to redeem myself now and be present because I know and I can do better. How are you going to make your Dash count today? What is your Dash? How do you want to be remembered?

So with that, remember to be present when someone is speaking to you. When your family is engaging with you, get off the phone, step away from the computer or the TV, move away from whatever you are doing and be present with them. Talk with them, have fun with them. Do whatever you need to do to disengage from the distractions, and engage with your loved ones. This way you can truly saviour those moments and create those memories, that both of you will always remember.

family time being present

Learning more

This is Carolyne Onkoba with making your Dash count. What does making your Dash count mean? Some of you might not be very familiar with that. Making your Dash count simply means – what is it that you’re doing right now that is going to make an impact when you’re not here? What is your legacy? Your dash is the time from when you are born to when you’re no longer here. So, how do you live daily so that you can make that gap, that Dash, count? Being present is a key part of that goal. I would love to help you either in your home life or your business – why don’t you book in for a FREE consultation & we can see if we are a good fit? Click here to book your consultation now. I post lots of inspirational videos and tips on my Facebook page too, so be sure to follow it today to learn more about making your dash count.

Carolyne Onkoba is a highly successful registered nurse, bestselling author, and an internationally recognized business and life coach. She has learned to focus on living for what’s important in life. Her initial success came at a high personal cost: broken family and missing out on her daughter’s events and milestones. Now, she helps people who are feeling unbalanced and unfulfilled in their life to get clarity, become more efficient and more productive. This way, they can make their Dash count by spending more quality time with their loved ones and live with purpose.



  1. […] latest tip for making your dash count. So far in this series we’ve covered knowing your why, the gift of being present and most recently about creating boundaries. Today I want to talk about something that is very near […]

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