We may want to govern our destiny, but some things are uncontrollable. One of the most important things we can do to achieve calm and inner peace is to stop fighting the things we can’t control. Instead, start working towards cultivating the things that we can control.
Every life story has a beginning, middle, and an end. For the most part, we cannot control the beginning or the end – only the middle. What do we want your middle to look like? Who will you be three months from now? We could be completely different than our life is now. If we are willing, we could have different health, confidence, more energy, and a more peaceful situation. It could be a journey with twists and turns that we embrace or one that we are fighting to gain control over.
“To have inner peace and calm is the highest achievement of the self.”
1) Find Clarity for Calm and Inner Peace
A lot of us assume that if we are patient, enough clarity will just arrive. That is why some of us feel inferior when we can’t gain clarity as others have. The thought here is that it’s something bestowed upon us from the outside. That isn’t the case.
An attitude like this is self-defeating. Clarity isn’t something that comes from the outside, and it’s something that we create ourselves. It’s a decision that we make, so we have to assume responsibility.
The level of clarity we have right now is the level of transparency we decided to create. Not deciding… that’s still a decision. In this case, we have decided not to search for clarity and not to assume responsibility.
Do we sometimes believe deciding this means cutting off other avenues to pursue? Clarity results from the commitment to one direction. It is our responsibility, and we have to accept that before we can move forward.
We might believe that we don’t want to commit because it feels like a lack of clarity brings about a sense of calm and inner peace. Without a finite answer, we can conjure any explanation or resolution in our mind, so it’s comforting. But in the long run, it’s not. Try not to leave things unresolved and be proactive whenever you can!
If you are like me I always “think” someday I’ll take the time to process this assignment. But then life gets in the way and I never get around to it. So, I have made a list of prompts to define a direction to go in life. Go ahead and check them out. Clarity and Self-Discovery Questions.
“Happiness is not something ready-made. It comes from your own actions.” ~ Dalai Lama
2) Hold Ourself Accountable
Have you ever said, “She makes me so mad” or “Because of him I’m so bummed” or something along those lines? The blame is on the other person, not us. Calm and inner peace means we have a strong sense of self-awareness, and the actions of others don’t faze us. We also understand that no one can make us feel a certain way because that comes from within.
Blame is a powerful motivator against taking action. Blame centers on someone else being the reason we aren’t experiencing the life we want. Focusing blame on someone else – or other circumstances – robs us of the tools we need to take control and override the blame game.
Typical ways we experience blame include:
- Feeling controlled by others
- Attributing lack by something outside of our control
- Failing to accept personal responsibility
- Perception of being of no value
Feeling hopeless or helpless through no fault of our own. It is a mindset issue that manifests in our body and environment. Many of us blame others and struggle with poor health, poor personal appearance, or surroundings. These characteristics don’t reflect who we are.
These results are:
- Being a martyr
- Passive aggressiveness
- Becoming withdrawn
Blaming others will not change anything. The longer we place blame on others, the longer we stall our ability to take charge and ownership of our power. When we blame others for not taking action, we allow ourselves to believe that outside circumstances are more powerful than they are.
Extreme cases of control and abuse do exist. But most people who cast blame are unwilling to take the steps needed to step up to the plate and do the following:
- Confront someone’s behavior
- Set healthy boundaries
- Solve complex problems
- Change our environment
Taking action will shift the tides. Doing what we must do happens when the pain of staying the same is worse than the pain of making change. Don’t let blame stand in the way of your mind and body connection.
Solving a complex problem
When we experience overwhelm, we tend to blame others and avoid tackling the issues. But solving a significant problem is possible. Break the problem down into manageable pieces and tackle them one by one. If we don’t have the knowledge base or resources, seek someone out who can help navigate your steps. The sooner we solve the problem, the sooner we can stop the blame game.
Try one of these ideas and see the shift happen:
Confronting a controlling person – Sometimes, we are unaware that we hurt others. One step would be to confront someone we’ve been blaming for their behavior nicely. Share how their actions have made an impact on you and that you want to change this dynamic moving forward.
Our mind wars with itself, agonizing over the injustice or unfairness. Getting past blame and taking action is empowering and restores the mind and body connection.
3) Be honest
Honesty is an age-old virtue for a good reason. Mark Twain once said, “If you tell the truth, you never have to remember anything.” Being honest alleviates the stress of keeping track of all your lies. Don’t forget about being honest with yourself too. We can easily fool ourselves into believing what isn’t true. Doing this is a sure way to keep inner peace at bay.
Being fair and honest with others is a trait of showing integrity. It includes not deceiving people and being honest when asked for your opinion on a topic. Have you ever made excuses for not going somewhere or because you needed to make that last sale to meet your quota? That is not using honesty at all.
Trust is a huge issue when it comes to the business world. Never try to cheat a customer for your good. For example, if you have received a defective product and you think that they won’t see the defect, don’t try to sell it to them. Instead, the right course of action is for you to return the product even if it means you will be out of stock. You can inform the customer that there is a defect, and you will order one for them and will let them know when it arrives.
The customer immediately sees you as an honest businessperson and will appreciate your honesty. They may offer to buy the defective product if it doesn’t affect the performance. That becomes their decision, and at least you made them aware of the is.
Those who display integrity are known as a leader and someone famous. If your goal is to be that type of person, then this is a trait that you can develop. The best way is to work on becoming a role model for others. Soon people will make a point of searching for you.
4) Find Out What Makes Us Mad
…But don’t get angrier about it. Pay attention to our triggers and learn how to work with them more in more constructive ways. We’ll be way calmer in the long run!
We all experience anger from time to time, and that is not always a bad thing. But, letting anger control our lives can leave us feeling stressed out and upset all the time. Anger is a normal and healthy emotion, but it is crucial that we learn to respond to this strong emotion in healthy, positive ways.
Uncontrolled anger leads to mental and physical health problems. It can harm our relationships with others and can even land us into legal trouble. Here are some healthy ways to respond to anger and get it under control.
Think Before We Act
Anger can cause us to react in the heat of the moment. But often, taking a breath or two before we speak or behave can help us see past the red and through to a better solution. The adage of “count to ten” really does work. Give yourself a minute to review how your words or actions may not make the situation better if we choose to react from an angry place. Take a minute before responding, and you will thank yourself for it later.
Learn More Productive Ways to Express How We Feel
It is okay to feel frustrated or concerned. It is how we explain this to other people that can get us into hot water if we are not careful. Learn to be more nonconfrontational while still being an assertive advocate for ourselves. State our concerns and listen to others’ responses. Ask more questions than we make demands. Use statements that make it clear how the situation is untenable for us and ask for solutions that offer a compromise for us both. Be prepared to make concessions when necessary.
Manage Our Stress
One of the reasons anger can start to take over is because we are under a lot of stress. Allowing stress to build up just cause our fuse to become shorter. The more stressed we are, the less it takes to spark our rage. More exercise, eating healthy foods, and getting plenty of sleep are all great ways to help us manage our stress and allow us to feel less angry. When we feel ourselves getting upset, take a walk to calm down, or spend a little time doing something we enjoy taking our mind off our emotions. Getting our anger under control is often only a matter of getting our stress under control.
It is not only kids who sometimes need a timeout. Adults could use them, too. When we start to feel our anger rising, walk away, or remove yourself from the conflict. Putting some distance between ourselves and the situation gives us time to calm down and think. The result is a more productive solution. It also allows us to feel more prepared to handle confrontation or an awkward conversation if that is what needs to happen. Do not be afraid to call time out when you need it to keep your anger from boiling over.
Make Sure You Know Why We Are Angry
Sometimes, we get into arguments only to realize later that what we are fighting about wasn’t that important. If we want to solve our anger management problems, start by getting in touch with what is the root cause of our anger. Are we blowing our top over insignificant issues because there is something much more significant? Then focus on what has got us most upset, not the nit-picky things.
5) Adrenaline Junkies: Tread Lightly
For all the adrenaline junkies out there, don’t forget to take some time to slow down. It could be a workaholic lifestyle or a fascination with engaging in dangerous activities. Whatever it is, it’s not always the healthiest for our bodies. Adrenaline rushes are exciting, but it shouldn’t be a daily affair.
Follow these tips to help avoid an adrenaline rush once and for all.
Turn Burdensome Tasks Into Habits
We all have enough willpower to get about three or four tasks done each day. Habits use other parts of our brain rather than the prefrontal cortex, which is where our rational thinking is. So, when we train ourselves to do something out of habit, we can look at it as less of a mundane task.
We’re using less willpower, and we won’t fall into the procrastination rut.
Things like brushing our teeth or making our bed have all become daily habits. We will perform them without even considering putting them off. Why not turn healthy eating, regular exercise, or turning in reports ahead of time into daily habits as well?
Break Work Tasks Into Chunks
Instead of cleaning out the entire garage, do the right side first, take a break, then do the left side, take a break, then finish off the rest. At work, big tasks may seem daunting when we look at them as an obstacle. The answer? Break it down into smaller tasks. Outline the entire project, and then divide it up into smaller tasks.
Working in 30-minute increments breaks down tasks into smaller chunks that are more manageable. After 30 minutes, take a break and assess your work. Seeing how much we’ve accomplished will give us that boost of confidence, we need to keep at it.
Checking our email every 5 minutes isn’t doing us any good. Limit distractions by putting them away.
Are you addicted to social media? How many times a day do you check your devices? Do you think it is 10, 25, 50 times? Now, take that number and multiply it by 25. That’s how many minutes of concentration we’re losing. It takes an average of about 25 minutes (23 minutes and 15seconds) to return to the original task after interruption. Read more here.
The important thing is that we set up a specific time for checking emails or social media. Once we’ve started our task, avoid the urge to take a sneak peek.
Another dangerous distraction is multi-tasking. Even though it may seem that we’re productive, the truth is it’s a complete waste of time and energy. It takes our brain about 20 minutes to entirely focus on one task and give it 100%, and then we bring in another job. So we decrease your focus level by half, bring in the third task, and the focus drops even lower. So although we’re working more, the results will be below average.
6) Learn More About Ourself
Dive more in-depth than the surface of yourself. Analyze what makes you tick and embrace your quirks. When we make peace with who we are and where we want to go in life, we will discover calm and inner peace we thought we would never find. Knowing ourselves and what we stand for is a crucial priority for improving our quality of life and achieving our goals. There is no way to set goals for ourselves without understanding what we want to get out of life.
By knowing ourselves, we respect our strengths and weaknesses, and we understand our dreams and what we fear. Know the reason why you do the things you do. Be aware of what motivates you, and it allows you to use that to your advantage. Let go of self-doubt and lead with a sense of confidence through whatever life brings.
Without understanding our values, we will not be able to know what we are looking for in a relationship. Knowing ourselves allows us to improve our decision-making skills, be more productive, and reach goals.
By knowing who we are and understanding how these various traits impact our daily life, we will be able to make better decisions. We will understand what our bad habits stem from and how we can reverse or change them.
The self-control we will gain from knowing ourselves well will benefit us in many aspects of your life. Restraint allows us to delay gratification. That will enable us to put off short-term desires to stay focused on long-term rewards. We will meet our goals, realize our dreams, and feel more calm and inner peace.
By taking the time to know ourselves, we will feel a strong sense of awareness of our dreams and our desires. It helps with decisions that will benefit our well-being in the long term. Decisions such as where we choose to go to college or what career path we select will be much more apparent.
When we understand what we want, we will achieve it and feel a sense of pride and joy. If we are in a career field that we are not passionate about, we will not feel the level of happiness that comes with finding our passion and our niche. Understand what we are good at and use it to our advantage.
Are we willing to invest the time to clarify our priorities?
Will we commit to a single path?
Will we learn to stop blaming others?
Are we going to take responsibility for our feelings and negative thoughts?
Will others think of us as being honest and sincere?
Will we take the time to figure out what triggers anger and frustration?
Are we willing to stop and slow down, break down tasks, and distractions?
Knowing ourselves is an essential life skill that will determine how successful and happy we are. Including making key decisions to motivating ourselves and maintaining self-control. We will feel more productive and prouder of our accomplishments. Although it takes lots of self-reflection, being honest with ourselves and understanding what makes us happy is the best way to live a happy life. We will have calm and inner peace.
I am Shirley Noah, an internationally known stress expert and entrepreneur. I would love to connect further with you to help you improve your health and wellbeing. If you are interested in learning more about finding inner peace and calm, please take a look at my popular E-course, Don’t Panic: How to Find Inner Peace and Calm