“Peace begins with a smile.” – Mother Theresa
“In my world, peace begins and ends with me.” It’s the same in your world. Go ahead, repeat that line aloud and see how it feels.
Does saying that phrase aloud inspire feelings of freedom? Does it inspire fear? Does it inspire peace or maybe it goes the opposite way and inspires judgement or righteousness. If you were to live your life with peace as the center of it, what would it look like?
I thought for years that if I had peace as my center then life would be boring. I would lose my passion and would become complacent with my lot in life. I was mistaken. I equated peace with not caring. I equated peace with being a victim. I equated peace with a lack of action. Living your life in a place of peace does not mean any of these things.
My mind will always have a flavor of turmoil. My mind will always welcome ideas and creativity and that immediately stirs up the status quo so how can I find peace there? My spirit is always yearning for evolution, I am always reaching for more understanding and wisdom. How can I be at peace there if I am never satisfied. My emotions are always reaching out to understand others, to connect with empathy and love. None of this is peace inducing so how can I find peace if my whole being is in constant motion and growing.
I have found some peace recently in my center and it all starts, like Mother Theresa said, with a smile. I have found peace in how I interact with others. I recognize that we all are talking through the filters of our pain and have empathy. I have found we are all in need of clarity and boundaries so I assert mine with compassion. I have found we all need recognition so I embrace accountability in behavior with rewards and questions.
Basically, I stopped freaking out.
No one responds well to a freak out. You lose credibility, you lose attention and you lose your point when you freak out. Basically when you lose your sh*# at the people around you, you are passing the pain x1000. You are taking something that can be corrected in a calm and rational way and turning it into punishment and retribution because it’s too painful to handle on your own.
I also started forgiving myself.
When I can forgive myself of my failures I can be forgiving to others. When I can’t forgive myself, I stay in the middle of that pain and as it collects beyond a level I can handle, I pass it to others in an unproductive way. (Yes there is a productive way to pass the pain). When I can forgive others then I can interact with a sense of inner peace.
I stopped giving others my power.
I had been giving the people around me the power to disrupt my life and create chaos. From the husband and daughter, to my staff, to my friends. If they had an emergency it was my emergency. If they were in chaos I let it become mine. If they were expressing a bad day, I took it personally. I can stand in my own power, be compassionate.
Peace always begins with you and your actions. It’s your choice how you affect your world.