“It isn’t enough to talk about peace. One must believe in it. And it isn’t enough to believe in it. One must work at it.”Eleanor Roosevelt
Society has become a metaphorical blackhole.
Information readily available in a matter of seconds at your fingertips. A technological world, constantly promoting perfection and unrealistic expectations. People looking to outdo the next person, to convince others that their life is put together. To convince others that they are extraordinary people who live extraordinary lives. I might dare to say, to even provoke jealously in others.
We have completely allowed ourselves to become dependent on the validation of others. Validation we wear as a shiny metal of honor. A desperate attempt to convince others that we are loved. Maybe even try to convince ourselves that we have mastered the art of self-love. We have become living and breathing advertisements of success. We claim that we are comfortable in our own skin and have addressed all our inner demons. We popularize our flaws and then have the nerve to claim that this is our authentic selves and there’s no need for improvement. Because we are ‘secure’ in who we are. Honestly, it is no wonder that anxiety and depression is at an all-time high. Too many self-suppressed emotions of how we really feel. Too much comparison. Too much competition. Too much hate, towards others and ourselves.
How do we overcome this?
We can start by finding our inner peace. Because here’s the thing- when you find inner peace, you attract like-minded people, circumstances, and situations. We attract people who add value to our lives. We attract our tribe. And ultimately, the quality of life will begin to exceed those pesky expectations we place upon our lives.
In order to achieve this, you must be willing to make peace a priority. However, this can be more difficult than anticipated.
It requires you to completely re-program your way of thinking. All of those ‘bad’ habits that we are conditioned to do day in and day out, seem to rear their ugly heads when trying to proactively change. I speak from experience. Certain life experiences have shaped and molded me, prevented me from achieving my inner peace. My disposition was prone to agitation and because of this, it was excruciating at times to remind myself that I was reverting to those bad habits. I’ve made great leaps of attempt to change, to become the best version of myself while accepting that the work is continuous. Some efforts have worked, others have miserably failed. And overall, more successes to come are still a work in progress.
Over the past couple of years, I have learned some methods to practice that has helped me get closer to finding my chi. These methods are painless, simple acts that can be so beneficial to the transformation of your life by shifting your focus from day-to-day priorities to peace.
It’s so simple, yet we seem to neglect this vital action during the times we need it the most. Mindful breathing has been a life saver for me. When I’m feeling overwhelmed (which is usually a lot of the time), I simply take a minute, close my eyes, and breathe deep three times. Breathe in through your nose, hold it for 4 seconds, and slowly breathe out through your mouth. You’ll soon realize that all the tenseness you initially felt, starts to diminish.
So I will admit, this is harder to do. Especially when you’re a total control freak, like I am. I’ve had many hard lessons learning that I cannot control all my circumstances. The more you try to fight against your unwelcomed circumstances, the deeper it drags you. You must be able to let go and let be. Resistance blocks energy. It blocks peace. Typically, once you surrender, a solution appears.
I’m sure many of you have heard that you cannot control what happens to you, but you can control how you react. SUPER VALID. I have wasted so much of my own energy caring about situations that should not have affected me emotionally. Whether it be frustration, anger, annoyance. I’m prone to agitation which leads to me becoming reactive. I have begun practicing the art of not reacting. Every now and then, I slip up. In those moments, I mindfully ask myself if certain situations require my reaction. Most of the time, the answer is no.
This refers to my opening paragraph. We are constantly stimulated and that is mentally draining. It’s okay for disconnect for a while. Turn off your phone. Plan a day in solitude. Trade technology for nature. Understand the beauty of doing nothing. No deadlines. No plans. Just you and a day to reset. It truly does wonders. My life can be so chaotic and I am grateful for it all, but a girl needs a solid day of no human interaction sometimes. I always come back feeling renewed and recharged, and more focused than ever.
I may be a tad OCD but I have genuinely found that a clean home does wonders for my peace of mind. Because believe it or not, the more clutter you see, the more chaotic life feels. Clutter subconsciously creates anxiety in a lot of people. Take a moment out of your day to clear your space of things you may not use or need. Not only will you feel accomplished, you will feel as if a weight has been lifted off your shoulders. It’s definitely a mood booster.
How often do you check in with yourself? Do you evaluate the circumstances you can change in your life to achieve peace? In the US, high performance and accomplishments are valued over self-care and self-help. We are pressured to meet deadlines, to excel in our jobs, execute our to-do lists, and so on. We are expected to execute every area of our life well. And all of this is great. A little ambition does the soul good. But where do you fit the time to check in with yourself and how you feel? A couple of years ago, I was working at a job that I was miserable in. It was affecting my mental health. I decided to leave without another job lined up. I had to make a decision that may not have been logical to others but I knew would ultimately bring me peace. And of course during that time, it was one of the scariest decisions I had to make. I look back and don’t regret it for one second. It was one of the best decisions I’ve ever made in my life.
I believe it’s time we start checking in with ourselves. Stop comparing ourselves to others and realize that we all want the same thing in life- peace and happiness. We were not meant to live this life constantly feeling pressured and overwhelmed. If you have priorities, make inner peace your first. Everything else can wait.
What are some ways you prioritize peace in your life? Have you tried any of the methods above? I would love to hear from you!
Sending you all lots of love. Until next time. Xoxo.