Peace. By definition, peace is the freedom from disturbance and the notion of tranquility. Each of us have the ability to tap in and cultivate a sense of peace, however it seems more challenging to do so these days. Peace can mean the feeling you get while laying at the beach, while watching the sunset, or when you enter a flow state while doing your favorite activities; peace can also be cultivated when you say ‘no’ to people, places, and things that don’t serve you or bring about happiness.
An important thing to learn is how to protect and prioritize your sense of peace. An example of this is let’s say your friends invited you out on a Friday night but you feel very rundown and exhausted from the school week. Maybe you would rather spend time with your family or enjoy an early bedtime to reset from the long week you had. You might feel guilty for not spending time with your friends, but you know in your heart that you need rest and you don’t want to be out and about. You have a choice to make: you can choose to prioritize rest, peace, and rejuvenation by staying home, or you can go out anyway and continue to drain your energy.
Also, I challenge you to start paying attention to how different situations and people make you feel. If a certain person makes you feel unhappy, insecure, or angry, protect your peace by not engaging with them. Respectfully distance yourself from that person and watch how much better you feel. Situations can also serve you in a positive way, or sometimes they rob you of peace. Certainly, we can’t all ditch school even if it makes us feel frustrated or upset; there are certain obligations we have, even if they don’t necessarily bring us joy and make us feel at peace. My point is to see what you can control in your life, and make the conscious choice to protect your internal peace. In most cases, right away you can sense a lot about a person, place, or experience by how it makes you feel. Remember, energy never lies.
You can even make a list of all of the places you go, people you engage with, and things you do and organize it based on how each makes you feel. Next to each thing on this list, write how each leaves you feeling. For example, maybe after a club meeting you feel so inspired and motivated; this is an activity that you want to keep in your life. However, maybe after hanging out with a certain friend group you feel sad, lonely, or anxious; this is a huge sign to find people who make you feel good instead.
There are always choices in life. Stop engaging with “friends” who make you feel horrible and go find friends who bring you joy. Stop agreeing to things that you know make you angry or upset. Saying ‘no’ can be very hard, but it is imperative that you stop saying ‘yes’ to things you know disturb your peace and happiness. After all, it’s your life and you are in the driver’s seat. Once you start making conscious choices about who and what you engage with on the basis of prioritizing your peace, you will feel so much freer, happier, and find serenity in each moment.