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Note: This is a guest post by David B. Bohl of SlowdownFAST.
If you were to open up the dictionary and look up the word serenity the definition given is: “the absence of mental stress or anxiety”. I get this and want this.
It’s easy, however, to say we want to lead a life free of stress and anxiety, but achieving it is something altogether different. In our modern world it seems that stress and anxiety are part of everyday life. We are constantly being asked to do more with less, the evening news is full of chaos and unrest, and it seems that respect of our elders, ourselves, and of others has been tossed out the window.
We fall into the status quo of believing that since the rest of the world is stressed out and trusting of nobody, then we should be as well. We’re also taught that this is the only way to get ahead. What a terrible state of being to live in!
Take a deep breath, relax, and clear your mind. Despite the way life seems in the world today, there is a way to free yourself of this nonsense and live a life filled with mutual respect, mature relationships, and free of stress and anxiety.
Imagine how good life could be if you stopped being on the defensive, started being more open and honest with people, and dropped the negativity from your life and actions. What would happen if we opened our minds up to being compassionate with others, being respectful of their opinions and ideas, and looking at people to see their inner goodness instead of trying to figure out what sinister motive they have?
A different world
I’ll tell you what would happen – you’d find yourself sleeping better at night and living a life where you get up each morning and greet the new day with renewed enthusiasm and purpose. You’d begin to see true happiness – in yourself, your family, and in those around you. Believe it or not, you can see people differently than you ever saw them before.
All of us have nuggets of wisdom inside us – wisdom gained from life experiences, what our parents taught us, and discoveries we have made in this wonderful journey called life. Yet all too often we bury this wisdom deep inside us – we refuse to use it or even acknowledge it. We let our fears, our prejudices, and our attitudes cloud our judgment. We lose the ability to think clearly and rationally. We know that we should help our fellow neighbor who is having difficulties, but we let irrationality take over and think to ourselves, “Why should I help him? What has he done for me lately?”
When we learn to drop these prejudices and irrationality we find that the world isn’t as bad or against us as we were lead to believe. Instead of questioning the motives of our neighbor, or thinking only of ourselves, we lend that helping hand and almost like magic this new world begins to open up around us. We find that people respond in kind – they appreciate our help and in turn they begin to see the world differently as well. They know that because of your kindness that the world isn’t such a dark and forbidding place. There are kind people out there – people who won’t judge them or think negatively of them.
The you that were always there
You soon find your life takes on new meaning and that you become more productive in your social life and in your professional life. You start drawing strengths from your talents and relationships. You no longer control people, but instead understand their differences and opinions and learn how to work with them and truly enjoy them.
Blame and defensiveness get thrown out the window. We understand that – hey, you know what? We don’t know all the answers, but that’s ok because we know where to turn in order to find the solutions. We know that things are going to be OK because we have the tools now to help resolve problems through our personal networks and talent.
People start to see a new person – but in reality it isn’t a new person they are seeing, but the person you always were. You have finally freed yourself from the stress and anxiety of life and let your shield down so people can see the real you – not the negative, resentful person that was once before them. With stress and anxiety gone from your life you feel – and look – younger. You are willing to take on new adventures and new challenges – you feel happy and free!
Are you ready to open your mind and let people see that the world isn’t such a bad place after all? It starts with you. You have the power to show others what living stress-free is like. Find your inner peace and then open yourself up to others around you. Respect their ideas, their values, and their concerns. In exchange, share with them your ideas, values, and concerns and then work together to find the optimal solution to whatever problem lay before you.
Soon you don’t need a dictionary to look up what serenity is – you will be living a serene life and helping others to do the same.
David B. Bohl writes about living your vision at his own blog: SlowdownFAST. If you enjoyed this article, you may like to subscribe to his feed, or read one of his most popular articles, Conflicting Desires: Knowing That We Have Enough vs. Always Wanting to Better Ourselves.
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