How do we have peace during personal turmoil?
I think the answer to that lies within the truth of whether we practice peace during mundane phases of life.
Right now as I sit here, it is just after 1 in the afternoon. I am feeling peace but it was not so for the whole week before this. I have been experiencing a lot of anxiety. I take Seroquel – which is usually used to treat bi-polar. I take it specifically for my anxiety. I take it twice a day but this week it did not hold the anxiety back like it usually does.
Chest tight. Slight chest pain. Racing thoughts. Inability to stay asleep. Bouncing knee.
I tried to put into use the suggestions I have included below. I am still practicing these today.
If I practice being peaceful, in the down times, it will be easier to call upon when I am in the midst of stress. I will be able to center myself when others are agitated around me. I will notice my internal state and adjust myself to soothe my nerves. I will be able to do this because I will have that vibrational memory clear within me to call back to mind.
So today I want to share a couple ways to Practice Peace
- Box breathing.
It is as simple as breathing in to the count of 5. Hold for the count of 5. Breathe out the count of 5 ….and then pause the count of 5. Sometimes I don’t get my air all out in the same amount of counts as I took it in. So sometimes I breathe out to the count of 6 or more.
- Recognize you are not alone
Regardless of what religion you are involved in, many people believe in God and even angels. Their presence can be felt and held onto. Thousands of people have had experiences where “someone” came into a situation and saved them. But there suddenly was no one there. Angel –perhaps? And God says God will never leave us nor forsake us.
But it is one thing to believe in a heavenly presence in theory and another to bring that to mind when stressed out. It takes practice; practice picturing God surrounding you lovingly. Jesus said we have angels that are always before the Father (Matthew 18:10) practice picturing them nearby guarding you. Breathe. Be still and know there is God everywhere– even in the midst of uncomfortable occurrences.
While on this suggestion I have to share something really cool that happened last night.
I was in my room. No one was home. The house was dark and locked up.
I was spending time in prayer and meditation. I asked that God let me know I am not alone.
I went to the kitchen to get something and the living room light was on…a light I NEVER use.
Have a “safe space” that you create visually within your mind.
It can be an indoor setting or an outdoor setting. It can be as expansive or small as you want. I want you to see this space, your space, clearly. Notice all the tiny details from sight to smell to sound. Really imagine it. Let yourself settle in and be comfortable. Spend time there.
Frequently go to this place in your mind and spend 5-10 minutes there. This is your space that no one can take from you. When you find yourself in a mess– remind yourself that “soon” you will be able to take time to “go” to your safe place when you are alone for a few minutes. When you visualize yourself there, your heart rate should come down and peace flood your body.
We build momentum. One train of thought for 17 seconds builds to the next 17 seconds. We can keep building them on top of each other. Our bodies do not need to be on constant alert nor to be flooded with cortisol. It is very unhealthy for us. Taking a few minutes to detach from our unhealthy state of mind is truly beneficial for us. When we have switched to peaceful thoughts and visions then we have the choice, from peace, where we want our attention to go.
This tool can be good or unhealthy. Why unhealthy? Well, sometimes replaying what upsets us just causes the upset to intensify. If this is what happens to you when you “vent” then I recommend trying one of the other options. However, if you are able to replay the situation and look at it objectively to gain perspective…then this is a great tool. Write out what happened. Write out the conversations. What do you notice now that you missed in the heat of the moment? Are you able to see the other person’s side? Can you gain a sense of peace or resolution?
Regular exercise will keep anxiety lower than for those of us who do not take care of our bodies. Get cardio in. Walk 10 minutes at a time/ 3x a day. You CAN fit that in. Lift weights to strengthen your muscles. Even if you do not get any regular activity in, you can go for a 30 minute brisk walk and that will release feel good chemicals and help bring stress down on the spot.
- Find your tribe– Create a tribe
We all need connection. Even introverts like me.
I was asked by my new therapist “who is in your inner circle? Who do you confide in? Who can you be totally honest with about anything in life?” These are important questions to ask ourselves. Who DO we turn to– is there anyone? Now is a great time to start to reach out and build a team of a couple friends. You can meet people in church, or at yoga, Boy Scouts, book clubs. Start now because it takes a while to really get to know if someone is trustworthy enough for you to disclose your personal stuff to.
None of these tools is new to anyone. This has just been a simple reminder of things we can do on a regular basis that will come in handy in our time of need. Just one more helpful hint for you to have the best year you possibly can.
Until Next Time~
When we are feeling stressed, it is easy to become overwhelmed. To find peace, we need to practice being peaceful in everyday moments. We can build momentum by visualizing God surrounding us and spending time in our safe space. Journaling can help us remember our happy moments and see the other person’s side. Lastly, find your tribe and build a relationship with them.
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Kate, thank you for sharing your journey. It is beneficial to use other outlets where we can create positive energy to renew and restore ourselves.