Finding Inner Peace

Many of us want to attain a feeling of self-acceptance and contentment that will allow us to live to the fullest with minimal worry, stress, or fear. We are constantly looking for ways to feel good about who we are and what we do. Finding inner peace is important to every part of your life. It helps you perform better on your job and be more loving in your relationships. Perhaps the most important aspect of finding inner peace is that it helps you become kinder, gentler, and fairer to yourself.

One of the best methods to achieve inner peace is through daily mediation. Meditation is not just a way to relax it is also good for your mental health as well. Many psychological studies have shown that daily mediation actually increases your baseline mental abilities. It produces the highest stage of psychological development that scientists have been able to measure. Meditation allows you to become quieter and more stable inside.

Today, many companies all over the world are teaching mediation techniques to their employees, who in turn, are physically and mentally healthier and utilizing their health-insurance benefits less frequently.

A recent study reported in the New England Journal Of Medicine found that people who practice daily mediation undergo major surgery 76 percent less frequently and have to see a medical doctor 67 percent less often.

Beginning a daily mediation process is simple. Find a quite place where you won’t be disturbed. Sit in a comfortable chair and start focusing on your breathing, or on a word, or an image. If your attention wanders, gently dismiss the intruding thought. To get the most benefit it’s best to be able to devote at least fifteen minutes for meditation and to do it at the same time and place every day.

Movement, whether it’s jogging, aerobics, yoga, or dance, is another excellent way to achieve inner peace and create a strong inner core that protects us from the stressful events of daily life.

Yoga is a combination of physical and mental exercises that can lead to mental emotional and spiritual health. Yoga involves stretches, warm-ups, breathing exercises and a variety of classical and contemporary postures, and it’s good for people of all ages. Yoga exercises every muscle, joint, nerve and gland in the body and it works the entire psychophysical human structure.

Dance is a wonderful form of self-expression and it can help you untangle lingering knots of stress. Dance has often been called a “thinking person’s sport.” You have to concentrate to be good and that helps keep your mind off of other things. Learning new steps can be great for your sense of mastery and self-esteem. Many people who attend dance classes say that in addition to providing them with a good physical workout, dance adds a valuable dimension of peace to their lives.

For many people creative expression is not a part of their daily lives. Unfortunately, when you don’t allow yourself a forum for creative expression, you block a tremendous source of inner peace. Whether it is painting, sketching, sculpting, writing, or some other creative process, this form of expression can help you tap into the vast resources of inner calm that you otherwise might not have encountered.

Constructive living therapy or (CLT) is another excellent way to achieve inner peace. This simple strategy for living was developed in the 1920s by Japanese psychiatrist Shoma Morita. His strategy is for us to accept our feelings and do what we need to do despite the stresses of looking outward at the world around us and acting on our priorities, rather than examining our feelings and past.

Morita’s constructive living therapy has three main principles:

• Accept your feelings. Don’t fight how you are feeling or try to change it. If you are afraid, be afraid.

• Have goals but know what your purpose is for this hour, this day, this week, and this year.

• Do what needs to be done; take action. For example, don’t just think about your goal to start exercising, do it, now! While you’re exercising pay full attention to what you’re doing. Don’t think about the work you have to do at the office; concentrate on your contracting muscles and the pattern of your breathing.

While constructive living therapy won’t always give you peace of mind, it will show you a way of living in the present that will provide you with a sense of balance and accomplishment no matter how bad you feel from the curve balls life throws at you. It gives a flexible mind that realistically responds to whatever situation you are in, no matter what you are feeling.

Many people have found and studies have shown that volunteering can make dramatic improvements in physical and mental health. It can provide a rush of good feelings, reduce stress, release endorphins and provide a long-lasting sense of well being.

In fact, the Independent Sector, a Washington D.C. based national coalition of more than 550 nonprofit groups with volunteer programs found that many people go from being unfulfilled and frustrated with their lives to feeling their lives have taken on deeper significance through volunteering. People get great emotional and spiritual satisfaction from helping to change the world through volunteering.

When you achieve inner peace you can deal effectively with the daily grind, you can be more productive, content, and become a master of your everyday life. When you are the master of your everyday life, you have a tremendous sense of inner calm.

There are many ways to a achieve tranquility and inner peace. For each person, the road is different. The method you choose to follow to cultivate inner peace is not important. What is important is that you do it.

Joe Love draws on his 25 years of experience helping both individuals and companies build their businesses, increase profits, and achieve total success. He is the founder and CEO of JLM & Associates, a consulting and training organization, specializing in personal and business development. Through his seminars and lectures, Joe Love addresses thousands of men and women each year, including the executives and staffs of many businesses around the world, on the subjects of leadership, achievement, goals, strategic business planning, and marketing. Joe is the author of three books, Starting Your Own Business, Finding Your Purpose In Life, and The Guerrilla Marketing Workbook.