Do you ever feel like escaping from your daily round of responsibilities? Do you ever wish you could just turn off the stress and take a break from all the noise and confusion? Have you ever wanted to stop the world to get off and enjoy a moment’s respite from the competing pressures? Don’t worry. You’re not the only one. It’s a surprisingly common set of responses to the challenges of daily life. The problem is that it’s very difficult to get the world to change or slow down and adapt to our individual needs. To be perfectly frank, the world sometimes doesn’t seem to care.
This constant pressure that everyone seems to be experiencing these days is an integral facet of modern life. It’s also one of the reasons that we’re witnessing increasing levels of stress and anxiety in the world. The World Health Organisation now lists depression as one of the fastest-growing health conditions on the planet and the number of sufferers is increasing dramatically.
Whilst medical professionals and pharmaceutical companies are prescribing and producing vast amounts of drugs to combat the symptoms, the underlying challenge is that our modern way of living is causing more and more people to feel that they are no longer in control of their lives. Everything seems to be moving too quickly, relationships are reduced to minimalist engagements, the constant pressure and demands of modern life are pushing people beyond their limits of psychological endurance.
So, if that’s the problem, what’s the answer?
No one is free who is not master of themselves.
In simple terms, we need to cultivate a state of inner peace and calm that insulates us from the insanity of the modern world. It doesn’t mean that we need to withdraw ourselves physically, although it’s certainly much easier to experience the benefits of relaxation when we remove ourselves from the daily round of routines and responsibilities. A change of scene and a few days in the restorative calm of Nature can work wonders for our peace of mind and help us to regain our sense of balance. It’s a great way to reconnect to the natural rhythms of the world and breathe some fresh air for a change.
But, that isn’t always possible or practical.
The answer is to create an oasis of calm within our own hearts, a place of private retreat where we can experience the benefits of withdrawal from the world whilst still being fully present in it. Yes, this takes a little practice. But everything that’s truly worthwhile in life requires a little practice and perseverance.
The nearer a man comes to a calm mind, the closer he is to strength.
– Marcus Aurelius
This is hardly a new idea. The concept has been promoted for thousands of years across an extraordinarily broad range of cultures and civilizations. The development of inner calm was considered to be one of the highest possible virtues and a source of profound strength, endurance, and abiding happiness. That sounds like a perfect justification for cultivating your own oasis of inner peace but the physical and psychological health benefits offer a very persuasive argument in favour of following this exceptionally positive behaviour.
The key to the exercise is to learn to relax your head, neck, jaw, and shoulders and take a few slower, deeper breaths. This simple process initiates a much calmer mental and emotional framework and the process becomes much more comfortable as you learn to repeat it during the day.
The best place to develop this new habit is whilst you’re seated comfortably and unlikely to be disturbed for a few minutes. If you’re able to close your eyes during the exercise, so much the better, so that obviously rules out driving or operating any machinery! The method involves breathing gently and slowly and relaxing all your muscles and then you can add a fabulous measure of visualization. Imagine that you’re breathing in light. You can choose your favourite colour or imagine you’re bathed in rays of gentle sunlight. Whatever feels natural for you. As you breathe in and imagine that you’re deeply inhaling the light, feel the energy pooling in your heart and creating a fabulous feeling of warmth and comfort. See if you can hold your attention in this delightful concentration of warm, bright, positive energy. Keep breathing and notice how quickly your thoughts and feelings calm down.
The measure of wisdom is how calm you are when facing any given situation.
– Naval Ravikant
As you develop a close and comfortable association with this feeling, your body will adapt to the effects of your imagination. Your body will behave as if the energy is absolutely real. That’s the power of the imagination. Our bodies behave as if everything we imagine is real. The memory of this powerful experience will imprint itself upon your consciousness and you’ll discover that each repetition reinforces the feeling and adds more depth to the sense of calm, peaceful balance.
Your body will happily retain the sensation and repeat the experience with very little prompting from your mind until the pool of soothing, calming energy becomes a permanent feature of your awareness. One slower, deeper breath and a moment of physical relaxation will be enough to open the gateway to your personal inner oasis.
As you learn to assimilate this wonderful addition into your repertoire of behaviors, you’ll gain unlimited access to a rich and powerful resource that you can enjoy whenever you choose. Whenever you’re facing a challenging situation or a difficult individual, you’ll have access to your oasis of inner calm and a very positive set of alternatives to the old habits of stress and anxiety.
To be calm is the highest achievement of the self.
– Zen proverb
Take a moment or two today to create your own pool of inner light and calm. Notice how different the world appears when you turn down your stress and engage your deeper potential for tranquility. It’s a fabulous antidote to the pressures of modern life and an excellent way to discover the potential of your inner world.
Be happy now. Feel good now. That’s the only thing you have to do.
– Rhonda Byrne
Are you ready right now for a completely fresh approach to life’s great adventure? Get in touch with us today for a free session to discover how the growing global movement for personal growth, success, change, and empowerment can enhance your life!
Greg Parry created The Wellness Foundation and the Cognitive Empowerment Programs specifically to help people master their stress, overcome their limitations and explore the power of their true potential.
If you enjoy these blogs, you can imagine how much fun it is to have Greg in the room as an inspirational and highly perceptive speaker. If you’d like to invite Greg to talk to your company or organization or event, feel free to get in touch.
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