20 Small ways to find peace in your day
Everybody needs a little bit of peace. Not huge chunks of it, but just fragments that we can take wherever and however it arrives. Let’s face it with the fast pace of life that we live nowadays, moments of peace and bliss are few and far between. It’s easy to get caught up in little gripes and being unable to fulfill our daily tasks and duties without whining about every little moment that goes wrong in our lives. Little do we realize, but the moments that we choose to get caught up in the negativity of the day are those very ones that we can choose to find peace in, if only we tried.
1. Just Be
We’ve all had days when we’ve felt overwhelmed. Where we’ve been called upon to be somebody’s sister, brother, mother or father. We’ve probably been called upon to fill a role in a workplace, run errands or stand up to the expectations of a lover. We don different hats, put on our actors robes and face the world in one shape, form, character or the other. Let’s face it; this is the reality of our lives and the choices that we make every day. But there comes a time to simply ‘be’. What does it look like to you? While you mull over that one, here are some suggestions for what you can do.
- Retreat to the garden
- Read a book
- Sit on the beach- grasp a handful of sand, close your eyes and feel the grains release, trickling slowly through your fingertips
- Soak in a warm herbal bath
- Sip a cup of tea
- Simply sit on the porch and watch the world go by
2. Don't sweat the small stuff
Take a good long look at whatever it is that you are stressing about. Are you improving your situation by stressing? If the answer to the question is ‘no’, then please ask yourself why it is that you are stressing to begin with.
Car crashes, natural disasters and crises, perhaps all of these events call for a bit more of our energy and elevated stress levels, that much is true. However if we take a good long look at the things in our lives that are currently stressing us out and ask ourselves if it is really important we would probably come away with far less to worry about than we initially imagined.
Though the temptation may be high, we needn’t respond to every single situation by giving it red flag status. You may find your blood pressure rising in everyday situations like these:
- When the shop assistant doesn’t give you your change on time
- Person cutting in front of you in traffic
- Dropping sauce on a new dress
- Shuffling along behind someone on the street that doesn’t seem to realize your need or urgency to pass them.
Granted they may be annoying, but before you spontaneously combust in a flash of outrage and impatience try the following.
- Breathe in deeply, out forcefully, and in again serenely
- Like the image suggests, ask yourself the question- Will this matter a year from now?
- Then consider exactly how much life force and energy you are willing to give to the situation
Let some things go, smile instead, hold your tongue, you will be the better for it.
3. Stop Worrying
Too often in life we are incapacitated by worrying about little things instead of focusing on solutions.
Get solution orientated
Finances flagging? Instead of drowning in an ocean of worry, make specific plans and be strategic enough to find your way out of your debt. Talk to friends, seek advice, don’t internalize.
Focus on relationships rather than excuses.
If there is a family feud going on that you need to address, go ahead, pick up the telephone and call the relevant people.
Playing the waiting game?
Instead of staying home and remaining rooted to the spot awaiting a test result or word from an interview, go out and find pleasant distractions.
Do NOT be a slave to worry.
Flex those facial muscles! C’mon!
Your smile is probably the most attractive God given accessory that you have been given! Just in case you need a little convincing, here are some facts and figures on the importance of a smile.
No matter who you are and whereabouts in the world you are, there’s nothing that’s understood faster than a smile. How magical is that?
5. Embrace chaos as a part of living
You as a singular person can’t rail against the world’s injustices and problems. If you take it all in you may just feel like you want to explode, something like this.
As scary as the thought is, isn’t it also liberating? There is no way that the world is expecting you to be perfect and even if it is; there really is no way that you could ever be. Take that pressure off yourself right now!
Chaos is a natural part of life. Nature, life, love, art none of these things are an exact science. Even the most strict process oriented scientists, engineers and theorists are open to new information, change and development. Shouldn’t you be too?
Chaos can be beautiful! Check out this amazing video on underwater ink clouds and see how something seemingingly chaotic may in fact be a feast for the senses.
6. Use your lunch break as 'me time'
Always complaining that you don’t have enough time? You can find little pockets of time in your day to make things better.
Maximize your lunch time
- Disappear for the hour
- Turn your phone off
- Find a quiet spot in your car or an unused office and catch some zzz’s
- Pursue your passions! If you feel that you have not been finding time for your creative pursuits Bring your sketch pad to work, fold those origami animals or find a deserted spot to do your stability ball exercises.
Yes you may be at work and that time may belong to the company that you work at, however your break is your resource. Use it!
7. Traffic karaoke
It’s your own personal zone, as long as the windows are up and you’re moving at a reasonable pace, belt it out. Mellow, upbeat, energetic, danceable as long as you’re feeling it, you have no other option but to jump to it! Yes even if there are people around that see you, do you really care what they think or say? Life is too short to bother and besides, music offers so many health benefits.
Singing releases endorphins and other happy hormones in your body. Use music as a simple and effective mood changer to help you find a little bit of peace and fun in your day.
Take a look at these fun car jams for your entertainment.
8. Connect with your pets
There‘s nothing quite like the love and the hugs of your fluffy friends at the end of a long hard day. Well even if your pet is furry, slimy or scaly take some time to connect with them.
After a day of dealing with the rat race, the office and a number of other walls to scale and mountains to conquer, nothing beats the epic Lion King/ Lassie reunion that you go through with your pet when you come home. Go ahead, hug that fur ball, slime ball or scaly bundle of fun and find a sense of peace like no other.
9. Filter out noise and distraction
If you are continually invested in the thoughts and opinions of others, you leave little room for your own unique voice to shine through. Be very selective about the messages that you take on board from the environment around you. Easier said than done you might say but what are some clear steps that you can take in order to drown out the noise and distraction of others and listen to your own unique voice?
- Choose what you respond to
- Think before you speak
- Choose the matters that you give your energy to
When all else fails, hit the gym. A good session of pumping some iron, hitting the bikes or bouncing around in a class should help you feel better about yourself.
Choose your mode of exercise, it doesn’t necessarily have to be the gym, but the point is to get those endorphins flowing, elevate your mood and feel a sense of release. Feel yourself become energized and purged of the day’s energies as the sweat flows off your back. Don’t knock it until you’ve tried it.
11. Choose your music
Dubstep, piano, dance, pop, and rock, whatever it is that floats your boat, get up and go for it. Use it to give you a sense of calm, release, or energy. Play it in a loop, revolve the songs, do whatever you have to but get that blood pumping or mellow out for that matter.
Breathe in, expanding your belly and diaphragm hold to the count of ten, exhale and feel the release in your belly, contract your muscles and forcefully dispel the air. You would think that breathing would be something that comes naturally to everybody, but believe it or not, most people are getting their breathing technique wrong.
Too often during times of stress and angst we hold our breath and tense our muscles instead of being within the flow in the moment. Aside from circulation improving, lymph drainage getting better and the digestive system functioning at an optimum rate, the nervous system becomes more focused and you become mentally stronger when you breathe correctly. Try it.
13. Choose your battles
Not every war needs another fighter, not every border needs a skirmish. In as much as you may want to fight every battle and go for every humanitarian crusade that there is out there, there is one valuable resource that gets depleted every single time that you do. YOU!
This doesn’t by any means, mean that you should not take up a good cause if you have to. Just make sure that it is really worth your energy or that it is going to change your life before you do so. Otherwise, conserve your energy in the name of peace and your own sanity.
14. Embrace your talents
There is a certain inexplicable and unrivalled feeling of peace that steals over your being when you are doing something that works in the flow of who you are and what you love.
Gravitate toward your talents and skills. Do the best that you possibly can and do it with joy. When you are doing things that you love, you are in your element and what could possibly bring a greater sense of peace than doingthat?
15. Reconsider your enemies
If you had to examine your life right now, no doubt you would come up with people that you don’t like, people that you say make your life miserable and people that you really rather wouldn’t talk to.
Be that as it may, think about the staggering amount of power that you have placed at the door of your so-called enemy by elevating them to having these abilities. By heaping blame and responsibility at the door of your enemies you suggest that they are responsible for your life, more so than you are.
At the end of the day, your enemies are humans too. Before you go on a bitter and twisted rant about their misdeeds and evil doings, stop for a moment to examine your own mind, thoughts and intentions. Ask yourself what it is that you did in the situation and do a little reflection on what you might have done differently if you could have another take.
If you feel as if you can’t have a conversation with someone about the hurt and animosity that exists between the two of you, then it is time to do some serious introspection and then let go.
- Place some time and perspective between the two of you
- Find ways to accept things, acknowledge the situation the way it is and simply move on
There comes a time when all the worry in the world and the burdens on your shoulders can subside merely by taking a moment to simply unplug, disconnect, draw yourself a warm bath and simply go to sleep.
The mental rest and the simple act of cutting yourself off from the world immediately creates a bit of gap and perspective. Aside from rest and restoration, according to scientific research and findings sleep lowers blood pressure and inflammation, improves memory, increases circulation and prompts people to feel an even greater sense of gratitude after they have had a good night’s sleep.
If your sleep habits border on the erratic try to train yourself into having better sleep patterns in the following manner
Develop a routine
- Try for similar bed times every evening
- Watch or read something calming before bed time
- Keep electronics devices out of the bedroom if you can help it.
- Nap when and where you can to make up for lost sleep
17. Journaling and then letting go
Not everybody can afford a therapist or can think of a friend to call on in times of need to unburden the inner workings of their soul and that is exactly where a journal comes in.
If for no other reason, journaling is a great outlet for emotions and being able to express oneself. There isn’t a cheaper and easier way in which to get your feelings off your chest and then let it go.
Use journaling for the following purposes:
- Knowing yourself better
- Expressing your thoughts
- Clarifying your thoughts and feelings
- Understanding the other persons perspective
There comes a time when you simply have to accept situations and people for who they are. No amount of fighting and wishing that things there different will ever change the status quo and what it is, you simply have to have the vision to see things as they are and accept that the only person that you have the power to change is you.
The important thing that you need to realize is that acceptance is not resignation or even failure, but an intellectual and deliberate decision to understand the facts and realities placed before you.
Do the following exercise:
Grab a pen and paper
Write down all of the matters that are challenging you in your life at the moment
Include areas like:
You can change your life with the power of acceptance
Now ask yourself about the areas in which you can change and make a difference by your own actions and then consider which situations and circumstances you have to accept as they are.
In finding acceptance you are truly able to see the value in a moment and the lessons that exist as well.
19. Drink a glass of water
With one part hydrogen and two parts oxygen, there is no denying that a glass of water can only be good for you.
The oxygen acts as an immediate pick me up and calm me down, all in one. There are also subtle cognitive benefits to drinking water, memory power is slightly improved, your internal organs function at a more optimal rate, the joints are cushioned and the overall health and wellbeing of your body improves. Bliss!
Too often in life, we tend to think more about our woes and negative experiences than we do about our positive ones.
Take a moment; count the things in your life that you appreciate, which bring you joy and unending happiness.
Even if you can come up with only one, that is reason enough for you to be grateful. If you still feel as if you have too little to be grateful for, consider writing in a gratitude journal and then reflecting over a period of time on the good in your life.
In the name of peace and gratitude, here’s hoping that you find many experiences that will feed and shape your existence.