Today is International Peace Day and World Gratitude Day. I think it’s more than a coincidence that both are celebrated on the same day. In Part 1 of this blog, I shared some tips on how to find peace within by tending to your physical health and mental health. There are two more important components: tending to your spiritual and social needs.
Take time to feed your soul
Take time for meditation. During this time, spend some time flooding yourself with feelings of gratitude. Think about everything and everyone in your life that you are grateful for. People who have everything but are not grateful often feel unfulfilled, fearful, and stressed. People who have very little can be happy because they feel so grateful for what they do have. When you are grateful, you are rich. When you are ungrateful, you are poor. Give yourself the gift of gratitude.
Take time for prayer and release your fears to God. Dozens of studies have shown that individuals who pray regularly stay healthier and live longer than those who rarely or never do. Some scientists speculate that prayer may foster a state of peace and calm that could lead to beneficial changes in the cardiovascular and immune systems.
Take time to do things that nourish and rejuvenate you, such as taking a relaxing bath, going for a walk, reading a book, listening to music that inspires you, or spending time doing a favorite hobby. Caring for yourself and having some fun will help you stay balanced and enable you to better deal with stressful times. Taking a few minutes for yourself won’t solve the problems, but a break will give you a chance to feel calmer and find clarity as you refocus your thoughts.
If you’d like some additional help focusing on what you’re grateful for, check out my Gratitude Journal to support you in forming this powerful daily habit.
Connect with those you care about
Have you ever wondered why things always seem better after you talk with a good friend? Well, it turns out that friendship is as good for your health as it is for your spirit. Researchers have found that having good friends helps lower blood pressure, relieve anxiety, and may even help you live longer. Many experts list friendship as the key factor in getting through stressful times. Connecting with people provides social support and strengthens resilience. And don’t overlook the power of man’s best friend – a dog or a cat.
I recently read an interview with a famous actor who admitted that he felt lonely. His interviewer, who was clearly surprised by this revelation, asked how someone with such fame and popularity could feel so alone. He stated that he did not feel alone — he felt lonely. The actor went on to qualify his statement, explaining that although he was surrounded by people all the time, he did not feel connected to those people, and that disconnectedness left him feeling lonely.
“A friend is a gift you give yourself.”
– Robert Lewis Stevenson
Sometimes friendships drift apart because of busy schedules. Other times it is because of misunderstandings or hurt feelings. Jan Yager, author of Friendshifts: The Power of Friendship and How It Shapes Our Lives, recalls something that happened when her father died and a close friend did not attend the funeral. She felt hurt and disappointed until she later learned that her friend had not come to the service because she was still distraught over the death of her own father. With this additional information, her perspective completely changed from feeling slighted to feeling empathetic.
Yager says that making friends can often seem easy. The hard part is in keeping the connections strong during the natural ups and downs that affect all relationships. Her suggestion: consider friendship an honor and a gift, and worth the effort to treasure and nurture.
You may not have control over what goes on around you, but you do have control over what goes on within you and how you choose to respond to events and people in your life.
If you have not been tending to your physical, mental, spiritual and social needs, you can change that starting today. Take out your calendar and schedule specific blocks of time to nurture all four of these areas of your life. Then get ready for the transformation that will take place!
If you need assistance building important but not urgent activities into your weekly routine–such as self-care or relationship-building—let’s schedule a no-cost Discovery Call and we can look together at how to make this happen in your life.
What are one or two things you will begin doing to practice extreme self-care with your physical, mental, spiritual and social needs? Please comment below.
Check out these FREE resources to support you in finding peace within: