Cultivating peace of mind is a goal many share, but too few achieve.
Cultivating Peace of mind
In the constant deluge of sensory input that makes up the modern world, it’s easy to get lost in feelings of anxiety, even depression and fear. Certainly, there’s plenty of information out there to make a person experience those feelings many times a day.
But it doesn’t have to be that way. The following three ideas can help you think more about cultivating peace of mind for yourself. Take some time to treat yourself well. All these ideas can lead to more peace in your life.
Every day, the modern world can make your mind feel like it’s in Times Square or downtown Tokyo. Not that long ago, the radio provided some distraction. Then, it was the television. Now, it’s the stereo, computer, smartphone, tablet and video games constantly bombarding people with messages. It’s important for everyone – not just caregivers – to create a peaceful space where they can cultivate relaxation and take refuge from all the noise and information of the modern era.
This can be a room at home, a special oasis in the backyard or a garden. Gardens can prove especially helpful, as we know here at Hope Grows. But they go beyond offering a needed chance for quiet and the pleasure of focusing on a simple, positive task. They also result in the next area, beauty.
Beauty is underrated. Just look at some of the images from the urban areas of this country and you will see that beauty has too often not been the priority. However, both experience and science tell us that beauty plays a significant role in enjoying life.
A doctor in clinical psychology at Harvard Medical School tested the theory. She sent 27 people fresh-cut flowers and asked them to place them around their homes. She then asked that they keep a daily journal of their emotions. Many reported that negative thoughts and depression receded while energy, compassion and enthusiasm surged.
The clinical psychologist, Nancy Etcoff, said that “things that are beautiful to the senses capture our attention and quiet the mind in an effortless way.” She said music and photos of happy events can have the same calming and reassuring effect.
This might be the most difficult part of cultivating peace or “peace of mind.” That’s because it requires you to take the time to get to truly know yourself.
Dr. John Forsyth, writing in Psychology Today, provides a detailed list of ways to stop the world and take the time to really feel your own emotions and listen to your thoughts. It’s difficult to do because so few people actually do it. Dr. Forsyth suggests it’s worth a try, writing that peace of mind is not a thing you get and then hold on to, but rather a state that must be worked at to be achieved.
Certainly, whether you follow his advice or others, it’s a good idea to give yourself time to truly know yourself. Rather than fighting against how you feel in certain situations, allow your feelings to guide you.
This also can lead to two important achievements that will help you achieve peace of mind: letting go of things you cannot control and not worrying about what others think of you. These are truly important ways to feel less anxiety and more peace.
Cultivating Peace of Mind, like growing a garden, takes dedication and patience. But the work that you put into it will pay off. You’ll feel calmer, more relaxed and less anxious. And that’s a feeling more valuable than anything else in the world.