5 Ways to Cultivate the Silence Within
Many of us spend our lives searching for inner peace. We look for it in our thoughts, our surroundings, perhaps in the food that we eat, the people who we choose to be with; however, we can’t look for peace outside and assimilate it within us at the same time. We have to create a silence within us for peace to reside, and we have to look at life from the vantage point of this silence. Only then can we be in a state of bliss.
So here are five ways to cultivate the silence within:
1. Spend five minutes every day observing your thoughts. Make an effort during these five minutes to sit in non-judgment. Let your thoughts pass through your mind. Also, make an effort to avoid reliving the emotions brought about by these thoughts, be they positive or negative.
2. Start your day before those in your house do. Even if it’s just fifteen minutes early, spend those first fifteen minutes of the day with yourself. Water your plants. Drink lukewarm lemon and honey water. Stretch. Smile. Read. Making this daily commitment will help you to nurture a more fulfilling relationship with yourself, and this will ensure a better quality day and life.
3. Pursue an extra-curricular activity with passion. If you’ve always wanted to learn photography, do so now. If you’ve always wanted to learn krav maga, do so now. If you’ve always wanted to start a yoga practice, start now. Making time and putting in the effort to pursue something you’ve been putting off creates a behavioral pattern which tells you that what you want to do can be fulfilling, and enables you to put yourself first.
4. Accept the situation and work around it. You might not like your job, or your neighbor or your current haircut, but until you can change it, your only choice is to deal with it. So deal with it.
5. Breathe deeply. Breathe whether you are stressed, overwhelmed, happy, annoyed, joyful, irritated, elated, blissful, worried, tired, energetic, optimistic, pessimistic, disappointed, fascinated or delighted. Always breathe.
How to Create a Meditation Altar
In The Miracle of Mindfulness, Zen Master Thich Nhat Hanh says that we should meditate because “each of us needs to realize total rest… mindfulness is the miracle by which we master and restore ourselves.” Sometimes even a full night of sleep doesn’t help you achieve total rest. How can the restless truly rest in modern society? Mindfulness, or the art of living in the present moment, is an important state of being to achieve in such a busy world.
Develop a Meditation Practice
As we rush through life, many of us feel like we’re not quite present in every moment. According to Karen Kissel Wegela, Ph.D., to counter this feeling, practice mindfulness meditation. Meditation allows you to let go when stressed and accept yourself just as you are – your thoughts, feelings and emotions as they arise moment to moment.
It is important to have a daily meditation practice that grounds and centers you. Such a practice will allow you to feel strongly connected to and centered with yourself. Sometimes, breathing exercises aren’t enough. You need a physical place to go to and rest. While mindfulness meditation can be practiced anywhere, it is important to have a sacred space to call your own. An altar is a beautiful space full of sacred energy that you can tap into when you need. Anyone can create an inspirational altar with just a few items and pure intention.