‘Peace starts within‘ is a saying that can inspire self-enquiry and also, the hope of change. I truly believe these words have the power to do just that, change the world from within us.
I have often read quotes containing a message about inner peace, in spiritual books and in the literature of those who have dared to want to make the world a better place. The inner peace message has also been given I feel from those who have understood what it means to be completely present in the moment. Here are just a few of my favourite quotes:
“Inner peace is beyond victory or defeat.”
— Bhagavad Gita
“When you’ve seen beyond yourself, then you may find, peace of mind is waiting there.” George Harrison
“Peace comes from within. Do not seek it without.”
― Gautama Buddha
“Listen! Clam up your mouth and be silent like an oyster shell, for that tongue of yours is the enemy of the soul, my friend. When the lips are silent, the heart has a hundred tongues.” Rumi
I also appreciate it may be a challenge to switch off from the cluttered-busyness of the mind. An inner war of worries and fears can put a downer on the day. The demands and wants of life may provoke anxiety and start a battle within our ego.
All is not lost; inner peace can be obtained with a bit of practice!
I would like to add that I also feel that a lack of gratitude towards what we have in life can magnify problems. When I’m in one of those moods where I see everything as half empty instead of half full, I try and go back to the little things I am grateful for in life. By remembering the little things, it helps me to get a feel again for the bigger picture. Contentment and progression are concepts that become easier to grasp when viewed through a mindset of gratitude and appreciation.
Inner peace isn’t about how spiritual you think you are, for by giving ourselves such labels; it portrays a message that we may have nothing left to learn; this can’t be the case. An example of someone thinking they are spiritual is when a yoga bunny, addicted to the yoga mat pushes people out the way in order to make sure they make the class. Yoga should follow you on and off the mat.
The important thing to remember that as human’s we are hardwired not to be perfect. That deep down there is never such a thing. Through accepting our wholeness we become more complete. By building awareness, the walls to love that we build through fear in our minds can be pulled down.
With all this in mind, I have come up with five ways that yoga can help with inner peace and inner calm.
1.Mind– Step back from any stuck records in your thoughts. The other day something provoked an old reaction in me. I immediately went into this complaining poor-me person who reluctantly cleaned my apartment, all the time thinking of how hard it was to work for myself, and what I should have achieved by now. If this happens to you, halt, find some place to sit or stand still. Step back from what you are thinking; is it real or just an old reaction? See my article on self-talk
2. Breathe-the speed and quality of the breath for me effects how centered I am. When I go off like a headless chicken, I stop, breathe, and just allow myself to be. I find this works wonders. By slowing the breath down and breathing from the diaphragm, calmness can prevail.
3.Move– Heart opening yoga poses help you to extend compassion to yourself and others. See my article on juicy heart opening poses for inspiration.
4. meditate. Give your cluttered mind a spring clean no matter what the time of the year by making the space to meditate. You just need as little as five minutes a day to make a difference. For a free meditation guide with no annoying sales funnels sign up to my newsletter, and the guide will be emailed to you. Don’t forget to open the confirmation email for it to work.
5.Observe the space between actions and thoughts. As I have gotten older, I have come to the conclusion that less is totally more in life. See my article on how to recycle your life so you can have more time to be!
So by stepping back from the mind, breathing consciously, introducing some heart-opening yoga into your practice, practising meditation, and allowing space, inner peace can be yours.
“The best things in life are nearest: Breath in your nostrils, light in your eyes, flowers at your feet, duties at your hand, the path of right just before you. Then do not grasp at the stars, but do life’s plain, common work as it comes, certain that daily duties and daily bread are the sweetest things in life.” Robert Louis Stevenson
For more inspiration why not check out my new book The Busy Person’s Guide To Every Day Enlightenment by Janey Bowyer
The World Sprite