‘Peace comes from within, do not seek it without’
Thanks to Kung Fu Panda, we all know how inner peace can change our fate. But is it actually possible to feel a sublime sea of peace inside, especially during those emotionally turbulent times?
According to a research website Jasonfoundation.com, suicide is the second leading cause of death in young adults aged 10-24. What leads people towards suicide; anxiety, restlessness, a feeling of despair, fear? None of these negative feelings can thrive if there’s inner peace or some semblance of equanimity in the heart.
It’s not that people who are at peace or equanimous with themselves don’t experience negative feelings and situations. They do, in fact some of the most successful people today have faced some of the most terrible situations in the past.
There are so many stories of people who turned their lives around. Whether it is a rags-to-riches story or a weight loss story, every problem has a solution.
So can inner peace actually help deal with a bleak situation?
Not only being at peace from within gives you the courage to go through a bad situation, it also prepares you to deal with anything in life. But inner peace does not come to you overnight, you have to cultivate it.
How to develop inner peace and maintain an equanimous mind?
It’s not that bad– When you are suddenly hit with a crisis, it’s normal to go ‘Oh my god this is the absolute worst’. Emotions decide whether you’re a warrior or a victim in a situation. Convince yourself that it isn’t that bad, you can go through it.
Cultivate a positive mindset– If you wear red glassed, the world appears tinted red. Your mindset is the base on which your emotions and thoughts thrive. If you are going to stick to a negative mindset- engage in depressing and negative thoughts- you’ll feel more of that.
A positive feeling can change your entire behavior. Have you ever noticed the change in your body language once you decide on something positive? Say, someone made a hurtful comment and you’ve been replaying it in your head, and all of a sudden you go ‘Enough, what others think does not define me. I’m not going to be affected any more’. Notice how your back straightens, shoulders flares, and you feel lighter? That is the power of positive thinking.
Self-criticism is the worst pain you inflict on yourself- It’s not just people who grow up feeling unloved or have lower self-esteem criticize themselves. If we deeply analyze our thoughts during tough times, we’ll be surprised how many times we have ridiculed ourselves for baseless reasons. No one can ever be at peace if they don’t love themselves for whoever they are, flaws et al.
This is why corporate coaches emphasizes on employee appreciation, how one pat on the back from the bosses can make the employee work doubly hard. We are all that way; we are all suckers for love and appreciation, even the person you see in the mirror.
Always be kind on yourself, you are enough, you do enough, and you will be enough.
Focus on what needs to be done- You manifest what you focus on. If your focus is on not eating junk food, suddenly you’ll see pizzas and fries everywhere. Instead of focusing on what you don’t want to do, try focusing on what needs to be done. If you focus on conscious eating, you’ll see yourself going to the carrot section instead of chocolates.
Let go– We harbor negative emotions for too long, some of us can go a lifetime bearing a grudge. This only affects the person bearing the grudge, and no one else.
Be free spirited. Just because one person broke your trust does not mean you will never trust anyone else in life again. You have to forgive- if not verbally then in your heart- and leave it up to Karma. What others say or do to you is not the problem, your reaction to it is.
If you are going to carry a burden, only you are going to feel the chip on your shoulder. Forgive those who have wronged you, not because of them but for your own happiness and inner peace.
Although inner peace does give you the required strength to go through tough times, it does not mean you will not feel emotional. It is humane to feel emotions and emotional healing takes time too. The idea is to not suppress emotions but to deal with them wisely so that you do what’s best for yourself on an emotional and mental level.