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Gaining an inner sense of peace can be a challenge for many people. Life is chaotic, and stress is the norm. Cultivating a sense of inner peace, however, can help make life much easier to face and handle. Here are seven ways you can reach a sense of inner peace.
Learn to respond, not react.
There is a difference between reacting and responding. A reaction is immediate, and often based on our primitive emotions such as anger and frustration. It can trigger others to react with their own anger or frustration, which can make situations worse.
A response is different. It is much calmer, and more thought out. It isn't made on primitive emotions, since it's based on gentler emotions and logic. Others usually respond in a similar, calm manner, which can de-escalate situations, and bring understanding to everyone.
Put aside perfectionism.
Perfection is an illusion. You are not perfect. Your actions will never be perfect. Your projects and endeavors will never be absolutely perfect. Accepting this is among the most noteworthy zen principles.
You put your best effort into something and achieve an imperfect end. How do you react? Do you learn from your mistakes, and try to do better next time? Or do you sit around and feel guilty, ruminating about it over and over again? Avoiding perfectionism is the better choice.
Correct, and make amends quickly.
There are times when you may say or do something that hurts another person. As soon as you realize what you did, correct it immediately, and make amends as necessary. A heartfelt apology is the first step. Own your responsibility in the situation.
Next, make amends. If possible, repair the damage. If you broke something, fix it, or replace it. Don't be afraid to ask the person you hurt, "What can I do to make amends?"
When life gets hectic, it is quite easy to lose patience with your spouse, your child, or a co-worker. It's important to cultivate patience in your life to keep stress levels down.
If you feel rushed, make a note of why. Give yourself permission to wait. You will likely feel very uncomfortable, but the feeling will pass. Deep breathing can help you regain your perspective. Then, afterwards, see if there is a way to avoid the situation in the future.
Do the right thing.
Have you ever made the easy choice to do the wrong thing instead of making the tough decision to do the right thing? It's more common than you might think, and more difficult than you might imagine.
Most people want to take the easy path. They don't want to be the person who stands out, or who raises a dissenting voice. Their minds come up with every excuse in the book when it comes to making the right choice.
However, doing the right thing raises self-esteem. It gives you a sense of peace, because you put out that extra effort and helped someone. It lets you sleep at night.
Okay, you've probably heard this a million times. Well, here's a million and one. Meditation helps you achieve a sense of inner peace.
During meditation, the mind releases stress, and lets you face turbulent emotions calmly. It allows you to be present in the moment, and avoid the anxiety of thinking about the future. It helps clarify your thinking.
Your current life isn't permanent. Something is going to change at some time. Your kids are going to grow up and move out. Your company may downsize, and you may need a new job. Your spouse may get life-threatening injuries from an accident.
Change is going to happen, regardless of whether we accept it or not. It's common to fear what we don't know. Learning to accept change, and embrace the possibilities it brings can free you of a lot of stress and anxiety.
These tips will help you achieve inner peace. It all begins with a single step. Which step are you going to take first?