Knowing how to find inner peace and happiness means more than beating the stress a bad day can cause.
It’s an essential component to a life that is content.
You can choose happiness at any time.
You can take the darkest, baddest day and find something about it that can make you happy.
When you are able to do this consistently, then you can tap into the creative centers of your mind more often. You can be more productive.
You can find the person you remember being.
Now here’s some good news: you can begin the process of finding your inner peace and happiness right now.
All it takes is a willingness to step away from the chaos you have going on right now.
If you’re willing to do that, then these 9 easy tips can help you find the happiness in life that is just waiting for you.
#1. Mindfulness Meditation
The clock is running. Make the most of today. Time waits for no man. Yesterday is history. Tomorrow is a mystery. Today is a gift. That’s why it is called the present. – Alice Morse Earle
Since the 12th century, philosophers have noted that a key component of the human experience is realizing that we really aren’t in control.
The tides come and go no matter what we do. People find employment, get fired, and life continues to move on.
What does this mean for our inner peace and happiness?
It means we can start becoming observers instead of trying to control everything around us.
The moment we allow ourselves to let go, we have more time to examine the perfection each moment has to offer us.
What about the darkest times of life?
When we lose loved ones, lose a job and the bills don’t get paid, or other tragedies happen, there is still perfection to be found.
Look for the heroes who step forth in the midst of the chaos. These are the people who shine brightest when the days are at their darkest.
When we aren’t in our darkest days, then we also have an opportunity to shine bright thanks to mindfulness meditation.
This practice allows us to experience life to its fullest.
Each sense is heightened over time. In return, peace begins to form out of the chaos, time slows down, and happiness takes over.
It only takes 20 minutes of mindfulness meditation each day for 4 consecutive days to begin experiencing some of these benefits. Why not get started today?
#2. Brainwave Entrainment
Stress can arrive for many reasons.
Maybe it’s because there’s a tough project at work.
Maybe your better half didn’t come home on time and didn’t call ahead to let you know and you’re worried about them.
The kids are out past curfew.
Life can hit you in many directions at once.
Finding the calm in that storm can be difficult.
Sometimes you literally have to schedule time for yourself so you can be alone.
This is why brainwave entrainment is such an effective tool to use when you’re feeling overwhelmed.
Brainwave entrainment is a series of audio sounds which are tuned to specific wavelengths which your brain strives to match.
30-60 minutes of time with a program designed to fit your personal goals is all it takes to begin experiencing the benefits of this method.
You can focus more on your work. You can relax and unwind from a tough day. You can become energized at the start of your day.
There are even brainwave entrainment programs that are designed to help you sleep deeper.
Select your preferred program. Put on some headphones. Your mind will do the rest.
#3. Learn To Forgive
It’s easy to carry a chip on one’s shoulder.
Sometimes those chips even define who we become as a person.
The only problem is that each chip we add contributes to the burdens we bear every day.
Eventually these burdens can become overpowering and we lose who we are.
It’s not easy to forgive people who have purposely wronged you.
The most difficult person to forgive, however, is yourself.
Learning how to forgive means learning to let go of past regrets. The past is history. It doesn’t have to become your future.
This doesn’t mean you simply forget about your regrets.
It doesn’t mean you instantly trust others who may have tried to use you for their own best interests either.
It simply means that you take those chips off of your shoulder and you keep chasing your dreams.
Mistakes can cause personal pain.
Regrets can turn into grief and heartbreak.
If you need to make things right with someone, then do so.
Life is too short as it is anyway.
Don’t harbor resentment. You’ll find that if you do, chaos and discontent are following close behind.
Knowing how to find inner peace means forgiving yourself. Stop being your worst critic.
#4. Create a Clear Conscience
Even though we try to forget them, there are many wrongs we have committed.
They’re not always on purpose, but they still exist. Sometimes we must learn to forgive. At other times, we must actively seek out forgiveness so we can create a clear conscience.
It’s not just the weight of our own chips on a shoulder that bother us.
The chips that others carry because of us will also weigh heavily on the heart.
Knowing how to find inner peace within yourself sometimes means looking outward instead of inward.
Leave nothing unresolved. You’ll find that as you confess wrongs and seek forgiveness that you have more energy at the end of the day.
This is because we burn through a lot of resources dealing with the anxieties of how others feel and think about us.
Don’t just focus on the big issues. Even little things can become a big headache.
It may have happened years ago or just minutes ago, but inner peace is awaiting you the moment you begin to seek forgiveness.
What if forgiveness isn’t offered?
You can’t control how others think or feel. You can only control yourself.
Of course it’s nice if forgiveness is offered, but it is more important to seek it out proactively and commit to meaningful changes if necessary.
In doing so, you’ll find that happiness is a choice that is consistently easier to make.
#5. Tell the Truth
The little white lie. It’s the most destructive force on the planet.
This lie says that you’re actually doing someone something good.
You’re disguising the truth from people in order to stop them from feeling pain. It’s not a bad lie. It’a a good lie.
And that, my friends, is also a lie.
When you don’t give someone the chance to hear the truth, then what you’re essentially saying is that you don’t trust this person.
You create chaos in their world by trying to prevent chaos.
Maybe a little white lie is said with the best of intentions, but lies are eventually exposed.
What is going to happen when someone finds out you’ve been lying to them?
How would you react if you discovered someone was telling you lies consistently? Exactly.
Telling the truth doesn’t mean you have to be brutally honest.
It simply means you must use your communication skills to take a person’s thoughts and feelings into account.
“Do I look fat in these jeans?” Instead of saying, “Yes!” as loud as you can, you can be honest by simply saying, “Those jeans don’t look like they were cut for you. Let’s try to find a different pair.”
Lies multiply. More lies often get told to continue the narrative from the first lie.
It doesn’t take long for little white lies to become bigger lies.
Pretty soon you don’t even remember what the truth happens to be and the end result is chaos.
Knowing how to find inner peace and happiness means knowing how to tactfully use honesty 100% of the time.
It may take some practice, but you can never go wrong with a commitment to the truth. Never.
#6. Slow It Down
I have a good friend who has worked with me over the past couple of years.
His life is crazy. He gets up at 4am every day. He doesn’t get to bed until 11pm every night.
He powers himself through the fatigue with a consistent diet of coffee, Red Bull, sugar, and carbohydrate-rich foods.
I honestly don’t know how he does it.
He even went to the doctor a couple weeks ago, told them his habits, and after a long lecture about taking care of himself, the doctor discovered his blood pressure was 115/82.
He laughs when he talks about the doctor’s expression. “Someone with such high levels of adrenal fatigue shouldn’t have normal blood pressure,” the doctor said.
I bring this up because many people don’t realize how fast they are really living their lives.
We rush everywhere these days, don’t we?
Now my friend is fitting in a full-time job while raising 4 kids that are all 6 and under, so I can understand what he’s doing to some extent.
He’ll also be the first to tell you that there are days when he has to simply stop, spend a day sitting on the beach, and allow his body to recover.
If you can’t remember the last time you slowed life down for awhile, then doing so now could provide you with the inner peace you may be craving.
When was the last time you took a vacation? Spent quality time with your family? Turned off your computer, tablet, smartphone, and put blocks on your voicemail and email?
Sometimes the best way to achieve inner peace and happiness is to press the reset button on life.
If your computer stops working, it will usually start working again if you turn it off and then turn it back on again.
The brain sometimes needs the same thing.
Life is already moving fast enough.
Find a way to slow it down and not only will you have an easier time of choosing happiness, but your blood pressure will thank you as well.
#7. Identify Your Triggers
What is a trigger?
It is a specific incident that makes you instantly angry.
Stress and chaos come immediately after anger appears.
Even if you can funnel your anger into something positive, the trigger you experienced has forced you into a world where inner peace does not exist.
This means it is incredibly important to identify your triggers.
Anything can become a trigger.
Do you get irritated when you drive at night and a car with its brights on doesn’t dim them as they pass you? That’s a trigger.
Common triggers include confined spaces, being treated in an inferior way, and loud noises.
Each person has a unique set of triggers and those triggers can evolve over time.
Triggers can also be added or deleted.
This is why keeping a diary of what triggers you can be an important step toward finding inner peace.
Knowing what situations will generate anger will help you to avoid those situations more often.
It also helps you to identify coping skills which help you to manage your anger more effectively.
The problem with anger is that it is much like an iceberg.
People only get to see a fraction of the emotion you’re really experiencing.
Much of this emotion lies hidden beneath the surface.
If you don’t try to melt it away with a coping skill, it’s just going to get bigger and cause more chaos.
No one is unsinkable, despite what they might think.
This isn’t a diary you need to write in daily, but do write down the triggers you experience during a day so they stay at the top of your mind.
This makes it easier to identify them when they occur and you’ll know how to find inner peace within yourself a little more often.
#8. Make Inner Peace a Priority
Sounds easier said than done, doesn’t it?
Yet there’s truth to this simple step.
If we make the choice of inner peace and happiness a top priority, then it becomes an easier choice to make.
Think about it: if you make family a priority over work, then if you have to choose between the two, you’re more likely to choose family first.
If you choose video games over work, you’ll probably find yourself fired because you’re staying home to play instead of going to work to get paid.
If you’re choosing stress over happiness, even unconsciously, then this is what you’re going to find more often in your life.
How do you make inner peace a priority?
If you like making lists, then put inner peace as the top item on your agenda.
If you tend to internalize things, then commit to making inner peace your top priority.
Having a network of trusted family and friends to help you here is also beneficial, especially in the first 2-3 weeks of making inner peace a top priority.
It is easy to slip into old habits and not realize it.
Having people keep you accountable to your decisions will help to establish positive habits which can lead to happiness.
#9. Become a Volunteer
Only a life lived in service to others is worth living. – Albert Einstein
Looking out for #1 is incredibly important.
You need to put food on your table. You need to have a warm, dry home. You need clothes to wear.
There are needs which you must take care of so that you are able to pursue your dreams.
The only problem is that we can also confuse our needs with our wants.
Being stressed out because the rent is coming due and you’re $100 short is what would be called a “healthy stress.”
It’s an emotion which propels you toward going above and beyond to make sure your needs are met.
Being stressed out because you’re putting in 10 hours per week of overtime to pay for a new 4K UHD TV – that’s what would be called an “unhealthy stress.”
How do you find inner peace if you’re stressed out about the wants you have?
By helping others be able to meet the needs they are unable to meet for some reason.
In the world today, 1 in 6 people don’t have enough food to eat.
In the United States, 1 in 5 children don’t receive an adequate level of nutrition because of poverty.
There are families who have no homes, workers who have no jobs, and pets who spend their entire life as a stray.
There are volunteer opportunities which exist for every personal preference.
By meeting the needs of others, it becomes easier to find the difference between our own personal wants and needs.
Once this separation is rock-solid, it becomes a lot easier to find inner peace when it goes missing.
#10. Take a Long, Hot Shower or Bath
The hot water helps your muscles to relax.
The steam from a hot shower can help to clean out airways that may be a bit clogged up from the efforts of the day.
The stinging needles from the hot water help to open pores and have contaminants be washed away. When you’re taking a long, hot shower or bath, you’re at a place where time really does seem to stand still.
It’s pretty remarkable what the mind can do when it lets go of the constraints of time, even if for but a few moments.
Ever wake up feeling completely refreshed after a dream where days or weeks seem to have gone by, yet the alarm clock says you were just sleeping for 3 hours?
This is the same feeling a hot shower or bath can provide.
In some ways, this activity is its own form of meditation. Your mind is able to process events, label thoughts, and let go of stress.
To take advantage of what this place of inner peace and happiness can provide, make sure you leave your phone, your tablet, and any other distractions outside.
If you want music, then bring in a device that won’t interrupt your moment of zen with an email notification or an advertisement for the local used car dealership.
Time might seem to stand still, but your mind is far from inactive. Give this a try today and the peace you feel might just change your life.
#11. Look Through Old Photos
Time can also change our perspectives about what has happened in the past. Some of the worst memories can be instantly changed in just a moment.
A friend of mine recently found out that his father had been diagnosed with delusional paranoid schizophrenia when he was a child.
He never knew this, so his memories of his father were always bad.
One day his father just got up and left. Yet now that he found out this piece of information, those negative memories have a different perspective.
This is what looking through old photos can do for each of us, albeit maybe not to the same extreme.
Our memories encourage us to remember the best moments in the experiences we see. The negative memories are still there, of course, but they have been changed because of the positive emotions we’re experiencing.
An activity like this can even be done with family or friends to discover moments of peace and happiness.
Sharing stories, having a laugh, and reminiscing about the good days that have gone by can inspire us to replicate those moments in the future.
When we’re striving to choose happiness, the normal stresses of each day don’t seem to be so bad. Look back, remember the good times, and let that joy wash over your soul.
#12. Go Camping
We are connected to each other like never before.
When our family or friends are feeling cold and bitter, these feelings can wash over us as well. Even if our primary connection with someone is over Facebook or other forms of social networking, their bad day can quickly become our bad day.
Now imagine if 20 people connected to you are all having a bad day at the same time. And then a different 20 people have a bad day tomorrow.
That puts stress x20 on top of your heart and will eventually create moments where your strength bows underneath all of that pressure.
Sometimes you can let these things go and be able to find inner peace and happiness.
When you are unable to do so, then it may be time to disconnect from everything for awhile. This is why camping can be tremendously good for the soul.
Leave your phone in the car and use it only for emergencies.
If someone comes along with you, then have real conversations with them by the camp fire.
Go take a walk through the woods. Explore whatever town might be nearby without a tourist guide. Sit on the beach and let the cool wind and the sound of the crashing waves soothe your heart.
Even a 48 hour disconnect like this can help get you through the toughest of weeks.
It helps you relax, prepare for the next week, and process difficult moments without feeling the need to bear the burdens of others at the same time.
#13. Do Something You’ve Never Done Before
Maybe you’ve never been to a ComicCon in your region before.
Or maybe you haven’t tried that new restaurant that opened up last month yet in town.
Or there’s a day trip you’ve been meaning to take, but have yet to do it.
There’s a trail to explore, an experience to be found, and happiness to find at the end of the day when you choose to do something you’ve never done before.
There are some guidelines to this tip: 1) avoid new movies, TV shows, or video games as screen time can increase mental fatigue; 2) there must be a spirit of adventure included in the experience in some way; and 3) try to share it with someone you love.
If you plan this adventure for up to 3 months in the future, you’ll find that the anticipation of going can be just as powerful in finding peace and happiness as the actual event itself.
Even if the outcome of the event isn’t what you might expect, you’ll still have a sense of satisfaction because you stepped outside of the box.
Doctor Who might stay inside his box because it’s bigger on the inside, but for the rest of us, sometimes you’ve got to have the courage to step forward.
When you do, happiness will most certainly follow along behind you.
If all else fails, just remember to keep breathing.
The future is still a mystery. The gift of today might feel like it should be returned when everything seems chaotic, but every storm has a peaceful center.
Find your way to that place with these tips and you’ll know how to find inner peace and happiness.
You can take control. You can choose happiness. You can be a light in the darkness that everyone can see.
It all starts with a willingness to find a way to bring calm to the chaos that is in your life.
Are you ready to make a new start?