Paying attention is being present. There is an intelligence that gives us life referred to as the unified field in quantum physics. It is said where we place attention, we direct our energy but we are mostly in auto play letting the beliefs or programs in the subconscious run 95% of our daily activities using less than 5% of our conscious in being present.
Not being present is possible when we live in our past, thinking of what could have been. Our brains are records of our past. People wake up thinking of their problems in regards to people, events, places and things. This turns on circuits of the past, memories which are linked to emotions of judgement, anger, disappointments among others leading to a certain way of thinking or a state of being because thoughts are the language of the brain and feelings language of the body, hence the entire state of being is in a familiar past creating a predictable future. In recent times, through technology and social media, we create a bigger distraction on a regular basis supported by doing daily activities in a specific way; from waking up, getting ready, going to work, routine daily activities to retiring in the evening creating a loop hence the predictable future.
You can exit the loop and be in control by consciously thinking about what you are thinking, reprogramming your beliefs “Your beliefs become your thoughts, Your thoughts become your words, Your words become your actions, Your actions become your habits, Your habits become your values, Your values become your destiny.” Mahatma Gandhi.