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When I was a child, I remember persistently asking my parents on our way home from mass on Christmas Eve, “When will it be tomorrow?” Excited for the gifts and festivities that we planned for weeks, I yearned to escape the now and to fast forward to the reality that seemed to might not ever arrive. Needless to say, tomorrow, and Christmas, always came in due time, with presents and laughter and twinkle lights. But it wasn’t really tomorrow, was it? As I matured over the years, I realized that my question was impossible to answer. The “tomorrow” that I had longed for would always, eventually, be “today,” otherwise known as “now.”The notion of fully and unapologetically living in the present–hence the titular “Now”–is the proposition expressed in Eckhart Tolle’s inspiring, best-selling book “The Power of Now: A Guide to Spiritual Enlightenment.” The title may seem to display indications of a hokey-pokey, otherworldly book, the kind I ordinarily think of as a waste of time to read. Yet, believe me, this one is unique.Tolle is a straightforward kind of guy, and he doesn’t allow the reader to make any excuses for not embracing the power of now. The book is formatted in a series of questions and answers, taken from real questions he has asked himself over the years after experiencing a major revelation himself at the age of 29. Therefore, his words felt directed very much at myself, and he often raises the exact quibbles and doubts that I had while reading.Within ten chapters, the book delineates the various ways that one can achieve one solitary objective: accomplishing the ability to be present in the current moment.What does that even mean, exactly? Essentially, there is no past or even future–no tomorrow or yesterday–only now. It’s all about now–how you are handling this moment. This might sound easy in concept–aren’t I always living in the now?–but it’s actually quite hard to do at all times and with your whole self.So how is one intended to accomplish this ideal state, one that Tolle claims can possibly spare the world from its own self-destructing propensities of stress, ignorance, and anxiety? The answer I’ve obtained from reading is practice. Establishing simple routines so that they not only can deal with being overwhelmed, but rise above it is crucial. Whether that means honing in on your breathing for a few minutes, observing the beautiful blooming flowers on the sidewalk, or breathing in the crisp air and feeling the sun on your skin, it is such a simple act that is often overlooked. Continually reminding yourself to focus on now will help you construct the foundation of your future without worrying about the mistakes of the past and hesitating about the future’s unpredictability.Worrying about the future used to cloud my judgement and overwhelm me with “what ifs,” preventing me to fulfill to my best ability in the present and in turn, it created a moment in the future that I wasn’t satisfied with that created anxiety for the next moment in the future–a constant cycle that I wanted to break myself from.After reading this novel, I am now a better decision maker and I actively take advantage of the current events and opportunities in various aspects of my life. This is displayed as I actively engage in my academic life by pursuing the understanding of complex topics right now rather than suppressing my questions, and is also displayed as I strive towards my personal goals without procrastination, and even achieving my dreams such as establishing my very own business at the age of seventeen.The best improvement from yesterday’s history and the best preparation for tomorrow’s mystery is performing your best right now. Now, I am committed to applying this invaluable life lesson into the next four years at the Honors College as I fully embrace rigorous academic concepts, enliven my curiosity through stimulating research projects, and create genuine relationships with students and professors that hail from various locations of the country and even internationally, coming together to create a hub of higher education at George Mason University.

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