Inner Peace

PEACE.

Freedom from disturbance.

Quiet and Tranquility.

“Be still and know that I am God.”  Psalm 46:10

Fully give yourself over to God and you will gain inner peace.

The Biblical concept of peace is larger than that and rests heavily on the Hebrew root slm, which means “to be complete” or “to be sound.” The verb conveys both a dynamic and a static meaning”to be complete or whole” or “to live well.”

This is grouped into the following categories (salom) as a noun:  wholeness of body – health, a relationship or harmony between two parties or people often through a covenant, as prosperity, success, or fulfillment and as victory over one’s enemies as in the absence of war. 

It describes completeness and safety.

(Credit www.biblestudytools.com/dictionary/peace.)

This inner calm creates a more healthy mind and body.  Stress can cause a myriad of health issues, such as high blood pressure, other heart issues, may keep you from being able to lose weight, headaches and migraines, higher rates of asthma, worsen stomach ulcers, cause skin issues and the list can go on and on.  It can also cause or worsen mental or emotional issues, such as anxiety, depression, foggy or unfocused thinking. 

Peace and happiness are very different.  Happiness may describe a fleeting feeling that is from a superficial place, whereas peace can be long-lasting and stems from within.

Address your immediate physical environment to begin to lessen stress.  A home or office full of clutter and visual chaos can add to the stress you are feeling.  You may be working on a proposal but are distracted by a pile of papers that need to be put away or preoccupied with piles of old magazines or clothes you need to donate in your home – if you take a few minutes of time daily to work on these areas (or set aside an entire day to make a big impact!!) you will begin to feel less anxious and more in control of your life.  Here are a few tips to get you started on the right track!

Also set aside a time to begin to declutter your mind.  With the constant influx of information and the battle to gain attention from kids, coworkers, social media it can be overwhelming.  Choose a time to unplug and remove that constant stimulation.  The brain needs to also recharge, and this isn’t necessarily completed during the sleeping process.  Train the mind to do as you command it, beginning small as you would in training for a marathon if you’ve never run before.  Create a space free from distractions (and clutter) and sit with your eyes closed, just focusing on your breathing.  You may have the urge to let your thoughts race or jump up to do some errand in your home.  Just concentrate on breathing.

Incorporate a counting exercise, such as the 4-7-8 breathing technique or utilize one of the many meditative music sources online to find one to your liking.  Close your eyes.  Focus on the music you began listening to at the beginning of this post. 

As an alternative to concentrating on your breathing, focus on a single point.  This could be a direction of your attention onto one word, a repetitive sound or a flickering light like that of a flame in a fire.  Do not engage with the random thoughts running through your mind, but instead be single-minded toward that one event.  Begin exercising your concentration for up to a few minutes and increase the time as your abilities improve.

A third way to create a peaceful mind is to place an awareness on your various thoughts.  Take notice of the patterns in which they enter your mind and turn into other thoughts – be aware without trying to qualify them, as if you were a third-party observer taking notice of these, but not being directly involved in them. 

There are other ways in which you may calm the mind, including YOGA or qi gong including self-massage.

Be open to exploring the relaxation and calm that may be brought into your life. 

Do not stress about things that happened in the past – you cannot change this – and do not worry about what is in the future – these scenarios may not even come to be.  Be fully mindful of the present and how you can enjoy that and carry those peaceful feelings forward with you.

Thank you for reading and please have a peaceful day.  Please comment below – what brings you inner peace?