Inner peace is hard to come by, especially in a chaotic and distracting world… unless you have the right techniques. Here’s how to attain it in 5 steps.
How are we supposed to find inner peace when we all want it all? We want inner peace, but we also want to conquer the world with our ideas and do good and play all of our roles perfectly for all people. And get rich in the meantime.
But life is short. Ten years spent learning to walk and talk and what not to eat because it’s poisonous, ten years spent dealing with becoming social and the opposite sex, ten years fitting in to the adult world, ten years maintaining it all and reproducing and then your body slowly starts to pull the plug while you raise the next generation to do it all over again. More or less. Salmon up a stream.
It’s important to stop sometimes. To let the madness of our social obligations, nearly all of which are about what other people can get from us, to settle, and to listen to what’s really going on.
What’s really going on is this Thing. It’s not the drama you assign to your ego, your personal myth. It’s not some cosmic mythology of good vs. evil or whatever vs. whatever. It’s not even time, this “be here now” moment. It’s this Thing. This completely inscrutable, breathing, transforming, pulsating Thing called existence, driven by water, food, air, information. This process called life which we largely fritter away on momentary distractions, work, business, chasing money or sex or highs or religion or getting pointlessly riled up about one thing or another on the Internet.
Stop. Relax. Be with yourself. Don’t be here now, either. Fuck Now. Now can fuck off. That slippery bastard always gets away from you anyway. Just be.
In this calm abiding all is known and all is present.
Give in. Just give in. You can’t change the future. You can’t make the past come back. You can’t manifest a billion dollars with the Secret™®©. Let go of your clinging to illusions, to the Santas you have not yet ceased to believe in. Let go of your clinging to anything. All that craving.
There is nothing but this breath. And one day even this breath will leave you. And where will today’s mad thoughts of who said what on Facebook be then? Where will all the gold you have won or lost in this world be then? Where will all your daily dramas be then? Gone away.
Stop. Remember. And return.
Here are five ways to let go of the things that ail you and regain your inner peace.
Inner Peace Step #1: Understand that the internet is full of assholes and fools that you cannot control.
It’s also full of a lot of wonderful people. But communication with those few people will inevitably be drowned out by the absolute narcissistic nonsense and vapid self-promotion spewed out of the keyboards of the many. The internet will assault you every day with spew from the bowels of Hades, and there will always be something to outrage you. Unless you’re a masochistic analyst of society’s pathology such as myself, you’re best off ignoring it. In twenty years a whole generation will look back over their youths and wonder where the time went. The answer will be social media.
Inner Peace Step #2: Meditate and exercise.
As much as you can. Start a meditation practice with five minutes a day and work up to thirty, consistently. Watch the stress steadily decrease. For exercise, try twenty minutes of walking, jogging or running a day, which doesn’t require any fancy equipment or gym membership. Long walks are very good for de-stressing. Like with meditation, you get to the flow states around 45 minutes in.
Inner Peace Step #3: Understand that you’re going to die and it won’t mean anything.
Really. It’s not a big deal. Being born means you have to die. Billions have died before you. Billions will die after you. Death isn’t an issue. What’s more important, according to all world religions, is your state of mind when you die, and that’s dependent on how you live. So enjoy life, and don’t get hung up about mortality.
Inner Peace Step #4: Surround yourself with people who actually care about you instead of chasing after people that you want to like you.
Everybody wants to be liked by the cool kids, but chances are that the cool kids are actually so narcissistic and paranoid about losing their status as the cool kids that they won’t bother with you. Whoever that “cool kid” is in your life, forget them. Focus on the people who actually care about you. If they’re in your life already, it’s because they want to be.
Inner Peace Step #5: Understand that you can’t change people.
Leave them be. They’re totally embedded in their own stories. Trying to modify the behavior of other human beings is a colossal headache and the cause of international warfare. If you want the world to be a better place, start with yourself. If other people follow suit, awesome. If they don’t, awesome. No attachment.
Improving your emotional health is a never-ending work, but the steps listed above are big ones. I hope they help.
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