Our sense of peace and easy is impacted by many things externally and internally.
- The quality and quantity of sleep you’ve had
- If you’re getting all the nutrients you need
- The amount of exercise you’re getting
- Your surroundings – people, sounds, setting physically & energetically
- The amount of work or pressure we face both internally & externally
- Quality of our relationships
- How we feel about ourselves
While external influences can definitely make a difference, the greatest way to control these influences is taking care of ourselves. This includes nurturing ourselves (sleep, nutrition, exercise) and quality of our relationships, which affect our endocrine system and hormonal balance, which in turn regulate our bodies. It also includes how we feel about ourselves, and this is the easiest way to allow for more peace and joy in our lives.
Here are 5 simple ways to allow for more peace and joy in our lives:
1.Paying attention to your thoughts and self-talk
Often we tune out our thoughts and self-talk, particularly when life is busy, but this is actually one of the best ways to monitor how we are feeling about ourselves and situations. Do you talk to yourself with love? The same love you show others? How do you approach challenging situations? Ever notice that when you approach a challenge with peace and expecting (realistically) a positive outcome, it turns out ok?
Because we so often don’t take the time to tune into ourselves, meditation (mindfulness) and breath-work (pranayama) is so important. You don’t need to do anything fancy, just sitting and breathing into your belly for a count of 4-8 seconds, exhaling for 5-10 seconds.
I suggest to clients taking at least 5-10 minutes in the morning, and 5-10 before bed. Not only does this create a healthy and calming routine for yourself, but it gives you that chance to check in to your frame of mind and thoughts. In the morning this is helpful to set you up for a great day, no matter what it brings! In the evening, this is a great way to release the day so you can have a restful sleep. Sometimes having a journal to note down thoughts before or after meditations is also useful.
If you can, try to also check in with yourself and your breath every hour. You can set a (soothing) alarm at work, or when you go to the loo. Watch the difference over the course of a week – you’ll be amazed!
3. Energetically protect yourself
This is another step I take in my meditations – morning, evening & throughout the day. There are many ways to do this:
- You can ground yourself by imagining a golden cord extending from your Root chakra into the Earth
- You can imagine connecting your Root chakra to a Lotus about 3’ below you
- You can imagine white light glowing in your body (starting with the spine – the chakra points), then slowly radiating out to create a protective white layer around you
- You can imagine yourself in a crystal of any colour where only positive energy can come in
- You can create a mantra for yourself – 3 positive ‘I am’ statements (ex: I am love. I am light. I am one)
- You can ask for a spirit, angel, guide or someone who has passed for protection
Like meditation, this is personal. You can try a few and see what you connect best with. When you do find what works best for you, try incorporating it daily or whenever you meditate. When you are faced with a challenge, it becomes easier to reconnect to yourself in a peaceful, loving way.
4. Create clear boundaries
This is a very practical one, but it can still be hard for many of us. Those who respect you will respect your boundaries. Be clear and compassionate with your words, and don’t be afraid to ask for what you need – 10 minutes for yourself, more from a job, help around the house… We all have needs, and when they are respected, we have healthy relationships and are able to approach situations from a place of strength. This is a very important step for your peace of mind.
5. Nurture yourself
And the most practical – take care of you! Love yourself like you love your loved ones! Try to make sure you’re getting the quality sleep, exercise, and nutrition you need. Everyday, yes everyday, do something daily that makes you feel good! This can be that 5-10 minute meditation twice a day.
Resources for Children & Teens:
If you’re looking for more resources for yourself or others, Ranbir from @FreeWithin offers an Adult and Children’s program you can download here:
Ranbir Puar will be hosting a by-donation session on Sat, June 9th for 12 years plus providing tools to deal with exam stress. Please register here.
Our Inspired Leaders (8-11yrs) and Kids Yoga & Arts (5-7yrs) Summer Camps also offer a wonderful opportunity for children to learn some of these tools for greater confidence, focus and peace in their lives… and of course we have lots of fun exploring these themes through yoga, art, games, and more!
Resources for Adults:
Most of our classes focus on meditation, mindfulness and breathwork. Meditation & Pranayama on Mondays or Yin with Crystal Bowl on Thursdays are great classes to dive into energy work you can do for yourself.