Being present is a practice of mindfulness in whatever you are doing at the present moment. May that be doing the dishes, feeding the kids or paying your bills, your mind is nowhere else but at that task at hand. This nonverbal communication heightens your sensitivity to your surroundings. This quality can be cultivated and have a ripple effect towards the people around us. It is difficult to be patient, to be loving, to be comforting if we are not fully present. When you are attentive to your environment, you can be more in tune with the needs of others, you become aware of what is really happening and become more effective. This is even more imperative when you are with the dying. They can sense the PRESENCE of the people around them, and if you are more present and settled, they will feed off that settlement and begin to surrender to peace. Being present for them doesn't mean you have to meditate with them for hours in a formal setting. It is possible to treat each encounter with a gentle touch of simplicity and attentiveness. This is basic by profoundly rewarding to them.