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Sunday, 12 June 2016

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Achieving peace of mind

A renowned Consultant Cardiothoracic Surgeon was once asked what he personally believed about peace of mind. This is what he said:

"Peace of mind, for me, comes from a sense of contributing to humanity. My own work gives me so much pleasure and enjoyment and is so exciting that I don't feel any desperation to get away from it."

"Of course, a strong sense of purpose helps immeasurably in directing one's energies, and the greatest satisfaction, I believe, comes from a purpose directed toward others and unassociated with self. Self -discipline is therefore essential, in my view."

"Because my working day is marked by pressures, emergencies, and demands of all kinds, I cherish the early morning hours when I can be alone. I rise at 4:30 a.m. every day, go to my study, and engage in meditation for half-an-hour. Thereafter, I spend another half-hour either listening to Beethoven, Mozart or Chopin or play the violin. At 5.30 a.m. I begin my one-hour walk."

"For me, the solitude of the early morning is the most precious time of the day, the only time that I have to myself. The early morning hours symbolize a rebirth; the anxieties, frustrations, and woes of the preceding day seem to have been washed away during the night."

Peace of mind

What is the mental state called "Peace of Mind?" In general, it is a state where the mind is not stirred up by anxieties or worries. The mental activity is phased down so that quietness and calmness can be experienced. Instead of being troubled by the past or the future, the point of focus lies on the present moment.

We experience this fantastic mental state, for instance, during a vacation or while being deeply absorbed in an amazing book. During this state we are not troubled by worries and thoughts. Instead, the mind is calm, we have found inner peace.

How can we calm the mind to invite mental serenity and peace of mind into our lives? Even more importantly, how can we maintain a peaceful mind in stressful and hectic situations or during times of great despair or difficulties?

The following tips would help to establish a peace of mind.

Meditate

If someone were to ask me, "What is the most powerful way to create a peace of mind?" I would recommend meditation without the shadow of any doubt. It is simply the most effective thing to do. I have experienced it myself.

In this context what I mean is not a spiritual practice, but a mindful practice to calm the mental activity.

According to neuroscientists, the continued practice of meditation can effect beneficial changes in the physical structure of the brain. This re-shaping of the brain's structure helps activate the part of the nervous system that is responsible for rest, allowing us to better cope with stress. Furthermore, meditation reduces stress and strengthens the ability to sustain attention. Recent research at the University of Massachusetts Medical School USA has found that meditation can dramatically reduce anxiety. The study highlighted that 90% of the participants, who suffered from clinical levels of anxiety, experienced significant reductions in their anxiety levels.

Just spend half-an-hour a day, in the morning or at night on meditation. There are enough free videos available in the net to learn about simple meditation methods.

Set limits

The laws of physics limit you and your potential. Therefore, we must set some limits to keep up with the daily tasks and thereby achieve the goals easily. The simple idea is that we have a minimum and a maximum number of units (time, money) we're prepared to spend on a certain activity (work, sports, spouse, and children). Having limits help us organize investments of our time, energy and other resources.

Don't make mountains out of molehills.

Life always has its daily problems. Some are big, while some are small, and we need to determine which ones need to be addressed and which ones to be dismissed. We need to stop and ask ourselves a couple of questions: Does this issue really matter? Is it important enough to address and will it even matter tomorrow, next week or the next month? How will my reaction to the issue impact the people involved? When we make a big issue out of something that is not really big, we risk a breakdown and stress.

Slow down.

If we want to keep our sanity, sometimes we have to learn to slow down and really enjoy life.

We have to savour those fleeting moments. When did you stop and enjoy the present moment without judgment or reflection on the past or fret about the future? Master the art of slowing down and enjoy life without sacrificing your goals and plans for the future.

Accept and let go

We've all been hurt by another person at some time or another, e.g. we were treated badly, trust was broken, hurt. And while this pain is normal, sometimes it lingers far too long. We relive the pain over and over, and have a hard time letting it go.

This not only causes us to be unhappy, but could strain or ruin relationships, distract us from work and family, and other important things. We get trapped in a cycle of anger and hurt, and miss out on the beauty of life. We need to learn to let go. We need to be able to forgive, so we can move on and be happy.

Peace of mind really comes from the harmony of life.

Peace of mind is another way of saying that you have learned how to live and live to your heart's content.

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