At certain times, it might seem impossible to find a few moments of peace in your life. If you have a lot of responsibilities or worries, you may feel caught in a whirlwind of trying to get things done while trying to deal with problems or your own complex emotions. Other people impact your sense of peace, too, when they ask you to do more than you feel you can handle comfortably or when they cause additional issues.
The good news is, no matter how difficult your external life is, you can add healing peace to each day. This won’t magically make everything okay, but it can help you deal with stress and protect your health.
Where can you squeeze in these moments? It only takes a news report or controversial comment to see that problems today are very real. And these are important. Doing what you can when you can is one way to achieve peace about issues. Plan and make your efforts as meaningful as possible. The feeling of control over something can help minimize the stress that feeling helpless brings. And you can make a difference when changes need to be made.
Recognize early when stress is beginning to overtake you. Ask for help with chores that can be delegated. Take a look at your calendar; use that and notes or lists to make sure you prioritize those things that have to be done, others that need to be done but can be rescheduled for a later time, and some that are just on your wish list. Prioritizing may help you find those tasks that you can let go completely. Don’t forget to make space for self-care.
When new ideas, needs, opportunities, and requests for help come in, you can look at your calendar and see a true picture of your time. It’s always a good idea to delay an answer by saying something like, “Let me check my calendar and get back to you with a decision.” This also avoids the immediate pressure of having to make a quick decision. Saying “no” is a skill and does not usually come naturally. Develop it by practicing what you really want to say.
If you are grieving or feeling ill, minimize the demands on your strength and seek support from professionals or peers. Support groups of all kinds can be found in local areas or online. Connecting with other people dealing with similar pain can give you immense strength. And you will find yourself feeling more in control as you return the favor by helping others or just letting them know you hear them and care.
These may seem like small, unimportant things, but having moments of peace in your life everyday can help you live better and do more. Even a simple plant on your table can bring your thoughts to nature and give you a break from pressing matters. When you can, a swim, a shower, listening to music, or working on an art project can do the same thing and nurture your resiliency.
Friends and family members need peace, too, so share what worked for you. You live in a complicated society, a global society, in which people interact with others who think and behave differently or who share your values but express them in different ways. Conflict increases stress. Make sure your day does not revolve around disagreements.
You may be experiencing anxiety or stress about parenting, money, work, relationships, health. One stressor often impacts other areas, and situations can be acute, episodic, or chronic. Parents of young children are faced with a different kind of stress than parents of adult children. At all stages of life, however, working with those who are important in your life requires the cooperation of everyone involved.
Don’t let stress go unaddressed. Your health and the wellbeing of those you care about are at risk if you do. It you need to make a major shift (job change, break up, relocation), find ways to make the adjustment easier, but first make sure you won’t be just exchanging one stress for another. Examine scenarios and address emotional issues that can clear the way for a healthy decision.
If no beneficial change can be made and you cannot find workable solutions, consider accepting a situation. The measurable difference in stress may make it worthwhile for you to stop trying to change or “fix” it. Ask yourself if what you’re struggling against really is worth all the anger and frustration you feel. It may be. That is very different from other things that can be let go without much sacrifice.
Only you can decide what is best for you and your family. Exploring these different strategies allows you to hold onto hope.