I have been conducting seminars for a long time. One of the most recurring themes that I hear from people is that they want inner peace.
In other words, they want to be happy at their core, and not allow anyone or anything to shake them. They want to “roll with the punches” and enjoy life regardless of what happens.
But is this something that people can really achieve? Or is it a myth?
I can answer that right now: it is absolutely not a myth. I am living proof. But unfortunately, a lot of people think the contrary, because they don’t even know what inner peace looks like. They don’t even know where to begin.
When I met a friend of mine about five years ago, she told me that I was the only person she knew who exhibited inner peace. She was fascinated because she didn’t even know what it looked like. She wanted it for herself but wasn’t sure how to achieve it.
Are you struggling to find inner peace? If so, I want to give you five tips that I have found along the way that are key if you want to achieve this state of mind.
Ways to Achieve Inner Peace
1. Stop caring about what other people think
We live in a culture that makes everyone paranoid that they are not good enough. We see beautiful and rich celebrities prance around our TVs and the internet on a regular basis. This does not contribute to our self-esteem in a positive way. In fact, it breeds a “Keeping up with the Joneses” (or Kardashians) kind of mentality.
We want to look successful, and we don’t want other people to judge us. But expending all that energy to impress other people – or to live up to their expectations – is not going to lead you toward inner peace.
Stop caring what other people think. I guarantee you, they are probably judging themselves and not you. Love yourself “as-is” and aim only to please YOU.
2. Stop chasing perfection
There is no such thing as perfection. What is perfect to me, for example, is not perfect to you.
Some people think getting straight A’s in school, being valedictorian, going to a competitive college, or having a fancy car is “perfection.” But guess what? Those people who have all that might be overly stressed. And I’m sure they are.
Related: 6 Ways To Become Happy
You should strive to be happy—not perfect. Perfection is subjective. A subjective myth, at that. It’s not achievable, so just be happy.
3. Make room for some “you-time” on a regular basis
Some people fall into the trap of being people-pleasers. While it’s great to want to make people happy, don’t neglect yourself in the process. If you constantly give, and give, and give, and then give some more, then you are going to deplete your “tank.”
You need time to re-charge. You need some time to do some self-reflection.
So carve out time – even if it’s just a few minutes here and there – to breathe and do what you love. It’s okay to be selfish – sometimes. In fact, it’s necessary for a peaceful state of mind.
4. Count your blessings
People who are not grateful will never find inner peace. Inner peace actually starts with gratitude.
If you spend too much time looking at what you don’t have, then you will be in a constant state of negativity. But if you look at what you do have and give thanks and appreciation to it daily, you will send out more positive energy to yourself and to others. An attitude of gratitude is probably one of the most important components of the inner peace process.
5. Have a sense of humor!
How often do you laugh? And when you do laugh, is it only at a funny movie or when someone cracks a joke? Or are you laughing at everything at all times? In other words, do you find humor in life?
I do. Even during troubled times, I try to re-frame it and realize that it’s not the end of the world.
A great family story that my mom always told me is that when she went to her high school prom, she tripped and fell down the entire staircase in her home just as her date picked her up. So what did she do? Did she start crying out of humiliation?
No. She laughed. And because she laughed, everyone else did too (with her, not at her!). You can find almost anything funny if you try. And when you live in a state of laughter, how can you possibly be stressed out?
Everything that happens to you is not the end of the world, so try to see everything differently and laugh about it.
I hope I have convinced you that inner peace is not a myth. It is a very real state of mind that can be achieved by anyone if they put their mind to it. It really does all start in the mind. If you change the way you think about the so-called negative things that happen to you, then you will never lose your sense of well-being.
Carol Morgan has a Ph.D. in communication and is a professor at Wright State University. She is also a motivational expert on the TV show ‘Living Dayton,’ the co-host of a popular radio show, a video expert for eHow.com, a frequent keynote speaker, and the author of several books.
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