“Be Where Your Feet Are”

 

The saying that started it all, for me. If you follow me on Instagram (@chucklesponcho), you may have noticed that in many of my photos the prominent subject is my feet. I take a lot of “from where I stand” style photos. Although I am chastised and teased by a few people for it (“are you taking a picture of your feet again…?”), here’s why I do it:

A month or so before my Fall 2014 study abroad semester, I stumbled across the saying “be where your feet are” on Instagram. It intrigued me immediately—the simplicity and ease of saying it and knowing it held so much more than the literal meaning. I latched on to it, to say the least—and it stayed with me. As I prepared for my trip—a big step for me, having not been out of the country or done anything like this before—I held on to my little nugget of encouragement. When I found myself worried about my trip or money or being homesick or the plane ride or any other details, I said to myself : “Hey, you’re not even there yet! Worrying will do you no good. Be where your feet are—here! Enjoy the people and moments around you because things will be very different soon.” I found myself repeating “be where your feet are” over and over almost as a little mantra of encouragement for myself.

I said it as I packed, on the plane, stepping of the plane, meeting my roommates, wandering around, laying eyes on Charles Bridge and the Vltava River (swoon…)—I repeated it all the time, and I still do. It’s one of those things that is easier said than done—actually being where your feet are and becoming fully present in any given moment—but I found it happening easier and more often as I repeated to myself.

This phrase helped me when I was struggling with feeling homesick or disconnected, and it exhilarated me when I was boating through Amsterdam’s canals and overlooking beautiful Prague from atop the hills (double swoon…). While in Prague, I even decided to get this phrase permanently painted on my body in the form of a tattoo! Now, when I glance down at my right foot, I am reminded yet again to be where my feet are—a reminder that will never be out of place; a reminder that will help me live my moments with intention, passion, and acceptance.

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