“When you focus on the past, that’s your ego. … When I focus on the future, that’s my pride. I try to focus on the present. That’s humility.”
— Giannis Antetokounmpo (source)
When I first read this early last week, I was stunned. All of the thoughts I was having about myself, my work, my project, my sense of place, and my anxiety about it all — all of it was calmed with this simple framework. Watch the video, he explains more about what he means.
The past is your ego; what you’ve done, how you feel about, your boastful self.
The future is your pride; how great you’re going to be, all the potential in the world.
The present — the now — puts aside what you’ve done and lets go of the future. All you have is this moment to act.
I remember this when I run on trails or climb on walls. The activity demands your focus. It does not care about your previous time or your future accomplishments. Every step, every hold requires you to stay in the flow of the movement, the ever-present now.