Inner peace sounds like a wonderful but unobtainable thing, a dream or fantasy that not ever be achieved. Actually it’s a choice. It’s quite hard to get your head around that isn't it? There are so many things to drag us down, the news, politics, disasters, things that happen to those we love and things that happen to us. Our emotions are all affected by those and we feel so much anxiety about our lives, we fear the future and regret the past.
To find inner peace we have to take control of our reactions, starting at the very beginning, our negative thoughts about ourselves usually come from our childhood, we need to face them. They are not true; they are opinions of others we have taken on as our beliefs. We need to learn we are loved and lovable, we make mistakes, we are not mistakes and we should not judge ourselves or others harshly. Once we start to know ourselves we can believe we are loved.
There needs to be acceptance in our lives, we need to accept that there are something’s we cannot change, in fact the only thing we can change is ourselves. We have to recognize that we all have egos and sometimes they drive the wrong behaviours in us, they want us to control things and people (we all know that control freak!!), they allow us to judge others and make comparisons about ourselves with others. These are all things we simply cannot control now matter how hard we try, and when we try to something that we cannot ever achieve we have no chance of finding peace.
We often think negative thoughts 'I can’t', 'it’s hard' 'I will never be able to...' most of these are based on fear, old messages from others, unexpressed grief and our inadequacies. But they are based on half truths at best and we are not what we think we are. We can control those thoughts (not easy!) and once we can part them from our feelings we will start to see a mismatch, if a thought about ourselves feels uncomfortable then it’s not true. We can change our thoughts starting by finding out where that belief came from - 'who told me it’s always going to be hard?’ Then we can stop them as soon as they begin to form.
Gratitude plays a huge role in inner peace; being appreciative of all the things you have already, really feeling how much people, things, animals whatever it is means to us brings us a warm feeling of love. It helps to stop us yearning for the unobtainable and living is a state of 'until' i.e. ‘I’ll be peaceful when I have...', 'I can’t be happy until I am thin' and so on.
When we treat ourselves and others with kindness (being our own best friend) we bring respect in to our lives. This is a choice for us every day, dealing with angry people, beggars, telesales - we can choose to be kind. We can say no, we can stand our ground; we can be assertive and still be kind to ourselves and others.
Bringing some peace into our lives helps too, meditate, listen to music or silence, and visualize peace- a Desert Island or a forest whatever brings you peace. We lead such busy lives inner peace needs relaxation so we need to make time for ourselves and not be over burdened, we also need to be happy so doing what makes us laugh helps.