Excellence University Blog

Self-Mastery Tip: Cultivate Your Peace of Mind

by Dr. Brian Higley

January 13th, 2010

There are many conflicts that most of us encounter in our daily lives; some are unavoidable, others are quickly resolved when we are in more clear states of mind.  Many have reported that when in calm states of mind, conflicts that used to seem very large or important fade away, leaving people with much more energy and focus for important personal and professional goals.  There are many methods of cultivating more peaceful states of mind, even in the midst of challenging situations and times.  Here are a few ideas that have helped many people do so:

  • Talking to yourself in more peaceful ways. “Harsh Self-Talk” is very common and is often a major reason for low levels of peace of mind.  You may wish to identify times when you say harsh things about yourself (for example, “I am so stupid.”) and provide yourself with an alternative thought that is (at least) just as true as the harsh statement (for example, “I made a mistake like everyone does from time to time.”)
  • Regular deep breathing. Often overlooked due to its simplicity, regular deep breathing can have a massive effect on peace of mind and clarity.  The link between using our entire lung capacity when breathing and experiences of peace is well-established; learning to breathe more deeply can help cultivate peace of mind by activating the parasympathetic nervous system (the portion of the nervous system that helps us calm down).  You may wish to read about how to perform deep (or “diaphragmatic”) breathing and focus on your breathing 1-5 times per day for 5-10 minutes in order to experience the benefits of this powerful exercise.
  • Engaging in more peaceful experiences. Experiencing more peace in your world can increase peace of mind.  You may wish to identify places, people and activities that bring about more centered states of mind and goal-set to spend more time engaged in things that bring you peace and clarity.

NOTE TO THOSE USING THE MISSION FULFILLMENT SYSTEM: You may wish to cultivate your peace of mind by adding a new Objective to your system by using the “Add New Item” link (for example, “Cultivate My Peace Of Mind”).  You can then develop a SMART Goal related to that new Objective by using the “Add Subitem” link to the far right of the new Objective (for example, “Make a list of peace-inducing experiences and spend at least 10 minutes per day engaged in those experiences 1-3 times per day.”).

FOR THOSE WHO ARE NOT ON THE MISSION FULFILLMENT SYSTEM: Click here to for more information and click here to sign up.

FINAL NOTE: If you were linked to this article by a video or email, please return to that link and proceed with any other instructions that you deem helpful.  For more Execution Excellence tips and tools visit our site at: www.excellenceuniversity.net

Article Filed under: 1. Self-Mastery Tips

10 Comments Add your own

  • 1. Excellence Tree Journal &&hellip  |  February 14th, 2010 at 11:17 am

    […] many ways similar to the development of a strong, healthy body; it takes practice and commitment.  Click here for more on cultivation of peace of […]

  • 2. Excellence Tree Journal &&hellip  |  February 15th, 2010 at 10:15 am

    […] I’ll be right back.).  During that time period, we can work to cultivate peace of mind.  Click here for more on how others have done so in effective […]

  • 3. Excellence Tree Journal &&hellip  |  September 27th, 2010 at 6:36 pm

    […] ability to stay focused on one’s mission can be cultivated by a deeper self-awareness, more peace of mind and the ability to cope with stressful […]

  • 4. Excellence Tree Journal &&hellip  |  December 29th, 2010 at 10:37 am

    […] An important note about these sorts of exercises: It can be critical to be very careful to avoid punishing candor in the areas above.  If we use any of the strengths or weaknesses we become aware of against ourselves or others, it can actually serve to hurt the chances that we will be honest in the future.  This is why I often recommend using the exercises listed above in conjunction with exercises to promote “Peace of Mind.” […]

  • 5. Excellence Tree Journal &&hellip  |  December 29th, 2010 at 10:54 am

    […] an effective and satisfied team” might be “Perform an activity that puts me in a peaceful, centered state of mind before coming to work every day.”  An activity aligned with “Keep in good physical and […]

  • 6. Excellence Tree Journal &&hellip  |  December 30th, 2010 at 9:30 am

    […] all be overwhelmed by too many extroverted activities and/or too many introverted experiences.  Relaxation exercises (such as deep breathing or relaxed stretching) can help us to expand our comfort zones when we feel […]

  • 7. Excellence Tree Journal &&hellip  |  December 31st, 2010 at 11:13 am

    […] in a class just for the enjoyment of it, catching up on some sleep from time to time or engaging in activities that bring about more centered, peaceful states of mind.  Becoming clear about what truly satisfies and recharges us makes it more likely that we will […]

  • 8. stjamesonwabash  |  September 19th, 2013 at 10:46 am

    This is my first time pay a quick visit at here and i am really happy to read Excellence Tree Journal

  • 9. Lindsey  |  August 9th, 2014 at 8:00 pm

    These are three excellent tips to help one cultivate peace of mind. I believe I do a decent job in engaging in all of these. To address my issues with negative self-talk, I created this blog: http://lindseys-positive-memories.blogspot.com/

    I use it to record my experiences and make sure I look at things from a positive, balanced perspective, instead of thinking things are so negative. It also helps me look at all the good that has happened when I am feeling down or overrun by negative. I have noticed that my negative self-talk has decreased immensely since I started this blog because it has taught me how to positive self-talk, and also be comfortable with that! It is not selfish to be nice to yourself! I think that is a common misconception in our society, that any sort of positive self-talk is egotistical or selfish, but that is not true at all. Positive self-talk is an extremely important part of a healthy mind! Perhaps a journal or writing positive experiences down would help, but the main thing to achieving a positive thought process is to practice it!

    For the second tip, yoga has helped me immensely with this! With yoga, it teaches one how to breathe and move, and be conscious of your breathe with you move. So often, we hold our breath when something is uncomfortable, whether it be physically or mentally. Yoga taught me how to keep breathing in those situations, as well as how to take deep, full breaths and be conscious of my breathing. I find this helps a lot with stress throughout the day; when I feel tense, I take a few deep breaths, and I feel better! It also is a great way to help relax and sleep!

    For the third tip, I have found that yoga, hoop dancing (and any flow art, for that matter), have really helped me create peaceful experiences for myself. I make sure to do these several times a day. Even simple things, such as taking a hot bath, can help a lot. The hardest part for me was learning to let myself enjoy those situations. I used to let past or future worries cloud my ability to enjoy the present moment, but yoga and meditation have helped me with that. I used to be bothered by going to the mall alone and walking around, but now I relish the “adventure” of just walking around and enjoying my time on my own, even without buying anything. It’s amazing how peaceful a mindful experience can be, even it’s something simple like driving with the windows down (I absolutely love to do this!). Peace can be found almost anywhere; it just has to do with perspective. Finally, with people, I have focused on bringing in people and keeping people in my life who are positive; they support, encourage, and inspire me to live a happy, peaceful life. Anyone who does not do that is not a true friend. While it has taken me along time to simply let go like that, it is very freeing and peaceful; no one has the right to take away your inner peace, and it is you who has control over it. So why not make your own little sanctuary?

  • 10. Nancy Kovach  |  August 10th, 2014 at 9:15 pm

    I love the idea of talking to oneself in more peaceful ways. We are often so critical of ourselves. It really is counterproductive. It is so helpful to practice the deep breathing, take things calmly and peacefully. It is so helpful to students to use these practices.

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