It is often said that "no one can make you feel inferior without your consent." In reality, it's not other people making you feel inferior that you need to worry about; it's yourself. The fact that your inner peace cannot be destroyed by others unless you allow it means that you also have the utmost power to maintain or destroy that peace with your own actions and thoughts.
Finding and maintaining a sense of inner peace is a bit illusive, requiring equal parts effort and acceptance. Like protecting the invisible barrier around a bubble, any amount to try to grasp or hold onto it makes the bubble bursts. What we can do is purify the air around the bubble, so to speak, and see where our own missteps are risking the lifespan of our inner peace.
Please keep this in mind: I was told by a very wise teacher that you cannot expect to always be in a state of bliss, a state of peaceful euphoria, continually at one with the universe. However, you can do what is necessary to be in that state as much as possible, and bring that peace and oneness into the rest of your life for others to benefit from. So let us remember that when we work to make ourselves better, we in turn help better the world for others. Sharing our inner peace is our only opportunity to help create peace.
4 Actions that are Destroying Your Inner Peace
There is a beautiful saying going around social media now: that worrying doesn't take away tomorrow's troubles, it takes away today's peace. It's hard to pinpoint who said it first, but it's easy to see the value of it. Worrying takes our time, our attention, and our energy (mental and physical) in a pointless direction, a direction that isn't based in reality and does nothing to change the circumstances. Instead, it pulls us away from the moment, which is where we will find our peace.
Notice when a worry comes to mind, especially if it is one filled with fictitious dialogue (all the things you should have said/would say/will say), and drop it immediately. Behind it, you will find your peace in the present moment, kindly waiting for you.
Not Honoring Your Temple
Your temple, your body, is your vehicle to success in every possible way. It is your greatest tool and your greatest asset, and it is up to you to keep up the mechanics and maintenance on this gorgeous vehicle of yours. Without proper oil changes and tune-ups, your engine can't run.
This means taking time for the exercise you need; we're not talking about guilt-inducing sweat sessions that are actually unhealthy for your mind (read more about The Gym Lie here) but any kind of healthy movement that keeps your joints fluid and your blood pumping.
This also means drinking water, keeping your vices at bay, sleeping deeply and often, and eating to give your body the kind of love and nourishment it needs. With a healthy body, you can sit in meditation, enjoy the people you love, and get outside to see the beautiful universe at work this spring.
Believing Too Much in Opinions
We all have them, we all wholly subscribe to them, and we can all easily became totally consumed in the false reality an opinion can paint. This is especially true if you are obsessed with the opinions of others: messages like "does he like me?" or "do they think I'm dumb?" are the kind of negative reinforcements derived from being too attached to opinions of others. Even though it sounds like a question in our minds, we've usually already decided that the need to ask proves the answer. Our insecurities run rampant from these kinds of questions because we always choose the worst answer.
When we believe too much in our own opinions, they tend to come across much more like a statement: "I am not good enough," "I am not skinny enough," "I am not outgoing enough." We give them definitive power over our potential, and so they create a cage around our peace from which it cannot break out.
Remember, opinions are based in the ego. They are like concert tickets: subject to change without notice, often dependent on the weather, and offer everyone a different view and experience. Opinions aren't where your actions and emotions should come from. Be not attached to them, and know that they cannot have control over you. Especially the opinions of others. You cannot control them, you cannot decide them, and you cannot worry about whether they will negatively or positively affect you. If you can find and access your inner peace, the strength of that light will quickly overpower any opinion, and help bring others back to the reality of now.
Not Taking Responsibility for your Peace
We all work out to get the kind of figure we want, and all understand that we need to keep working to maintain that shape, and yet we refuse to accept that we need to do the same for our minds and hearts.
Meditate. Meditate. Meditate.
It cannot be said enough how much this will help you access your peace. Some days your peace will be there glaring you in the face, ready to get inside your heart and do some work. Some days it will be very illusive and hard to find inside yourself, and you'll have to constantly push thoughts out of your way to get back to it. But the more you work at it and prove your devotion and love for it, the more it will come to you and help you live a better life.
Do whatever you have to do to find that inner peace, and keep doing it. Sometimes you might find that the best kinds of peace-meditations don't happen while sitting on the floor cross-legged. You might find it at the nail salon getting a manicure, you might find it on a long run, you might find it at a museum or up in the mountains or while drinking tea. Wherever it is, offer yourself the divine gift of visiting often, and indulging fully. Then take that feeling, and learn to practice it throughout your life as much as possible.
Rachael Yahne (@RachaelYahne) is a writer, blogger, and 10 year cancer survivor. You can read more of her articles about healing from life's big struggles, plus more on beauty, well-being, and living with passion on her website, HerAfter.com.