Finding Peace in Daily Life

Release control. We can’t control other people or circumstances. Everyone has the right to be and do whatever they please and it has nothing to do with us. So instead of trying to control them, choose how to engage with them. This is liberating to ourselves and others.

Step off of the daily emotional roller-coaster. If traffic is good, we are happy; if not we are frustrated. If we have money, we are at peace; if not we are anxious. We have to stop giving so much emotional energy to the conditions that surround us.

Give up people pleasing. Validation is good for all of us, but we may find ourselves relying too much on the appreciation of others. Start with smaller “No’s” and stop apologizing so much. But most of all, remember that our most important relationship is with God. If we are nourishing our spirit daily, we are more conscious of the much larger story beyond our current circumstances.

Cultivating Love

We enter into adult relationships looking for the love we had, or wish we had in childhood. This is an impossible goal. The right goal, is to love others that way. None of us will achieve this fully in our lifetime, but we can strive to get better at it.

Love yourself first. We project onto others whatever we feel about ourselves. If we grant ourselves love and acceptance, we open the door to treating others the same way.

Celebrate the qualities of others. Notice the virtues in others like honesty, kindness, authenticity, and humor. Reflect on the qualities of others that you admire most and tell them!

Get to know others more intimately. Imagine a man who has committed the most evil deeds. Now imagine his childhood. Perhaps someone abused him or showed him that he didn’t matter. Imagine a boy crying softly in a corner, night after night, his tears never heeded except with an impatient shove. The heart softens even if it doesn’t excuse.

Try not to judge others. Non-judgement is one aspect of the heart of our spiritual tradition. This doesn’t mean that you shouldn’t notice other people’s bad behavior (or your own). But there’s a huge difference between observing and condemning. Judging is an act of distancing yourself from others—and from yourself. Observing can be done impartially, even lovingly.

John 13:34 “I give you a new commandment: Love each other. Just as I have loved you, so you also must love each other.”