noun. freedom from disturbance; tranquillity; a state or period in which there is no war or a war has ended.
Whilst the chaos, the crisis and the craziness of the last few months has raged on, I have created a bubble of peace around me. My life has become peaceful for the first time in a very long time and my soul has found peace too. It is one of my many silver linings from this bizarre life experience that we did not anticipate would frame our 2020. Slowness, stillness, silence and solitude have become my friends.
“You cannot find peace by avoiding life”.Virginia Woolf
Going off on a tangent for a moment, I was just reflecting on 20:20 vision and how this number has brought us clarity and made us look at our world and our lives in a different way. According to the Bible, number 20 is a symbol of redemption, as well as a symbol of completion and perfection. In some parts of the Bible number 20 is represented as a symbol of something unclean and something that is not holy. Then I stumbled upon an article about angel numbers and that 2020 tells us to be prepared for what is coming our way. Our guardian angels were telling us that changes were about to enter our lives and that we needed to be prepared emotionally, mentally and physically.
I digress but my curiosity has been piqued and I will return to this exploration of the symbolism of numbers in a future blog to unpack these meanings further as they seem to be rich in symbolic messages for this lived experience of 2020.
My mind, my heart and my spirit are at peace.
After 18 years of being wound tightly like a coil, always under pressure, constantly stressed and ready to pounce to reaction, I have found a new way of being. I saw a friend this week who commented on how relaxed I was. Lockdown has served me, working remotely suits me, working for myself has completed me. As someone who likes to be in control, I am in control of everything in my immediate sphere. I make choices for me, by me, each day. This is both liberating and empowering.
I feel mentally and emotionally healthy. My soul is at peace with my life choices.
“Peace comes from within, do not seek it from without”.Buddha
I know I can handle stress and pressure, should I need to. I am resilient and have the resources and reserves to draw on when needed, I have the knowledge and the understanding of how to keep myself emotionally and mentally strong in the face of discord but I also know my triggers for stress and how to avoid them.
If personal wholeness is finding peace of mind and soul, then it has taken me a while to find it but I feel complete, at last.
I have found this state of peace through coaching, through emotional processing, through deep conversations, through reading, through writing, through letting things go, through accepting what has been and through visualising what will be.
“You will find peace not by trying to escape your problems, but by confronting them courageously. You will find peace not in denial, but in victory”.J.Donald Waters
As I sit here in my morning blogging ritual with my coffee and my laptop, the patio doors are open, the birds are singing, the sun is shining, the air is gently moving. I can hear, smell and feel the peace of the moment.
Writing has also brought me this sense of peace. My thoughts have never been so clear and my emotions have never been so balanced before.
My home and garden, my social sphere and my work sphere are all at peace.
My life is disturbance free. I have created the conditions I need to thrive. The older I have got the more peace and quiet I have craved. I have become sound sensitive and seek out silence and stillness to restore me.
I had my own office for my most of my career and I could create the environment I needed to process each thing that came my way. Leaving a school and going to work at a university, I really struggled sharing an office, I craved silence and stillness in my working day.
Resigning and remote working were not part of the plan for 2020, but my wish was granted as I have loved working from home. My home office is very much a space I can thrive in.
“Peace is its own reward”.Mahatma Ghandi
Professional peace also comes from being conflict free. My values clashed and my personality clashed, with my last line manager who I found impossible to work under. I hate drama and tension and actively avoid it. Hence why I resign quite a lot!
Peace for me also comes from feeling emotional safe, so leaving this toxic space and working for myself, having freedom and autonomy has also brought me peace.
I have intentionally focused on what brings me peace, I have deliberately funnelled and filtered things that disrupt my sense of peace.
It is hard to tell as yet how much the world has and will change as a result of the pandemic. We know there have been changes but I wonder if these changes will be sustained.
“World peace begins with inner peace”.Dalai Lama
As the humans retreated to their homes, the drama and conflict has been suspended. As the humans disappeared, the world came back to life, in its natural state. Animals crept out of hibernation, plants blossomed and toxic clouds lifted. The world found peace once again. We have seen the pictures on the news of the peace that has been restored without human disruption. I wonder if people will go on a ‘peace hunt’ to witness these miracles for themselves once we can move freely again. I wonder how quickly this new-found peace will be polluted.
I wonder how we will adjust to the next phase. I wonder how we will apply our learning from the last few months in the future. I wonder if we will let this learning stick, or whether we will come unstuck as soon as the restrictions are lifted. I wonder if we will be able to hold on to the inner and the outer peace we have created.
“Peace cannot be kept by force, it can only be achieved by understanding”.Albert Einstein
Peace may have been created through force, but it will not be sustained in this way. We will need to be intentional and conscious in how we move forwards.
New habits have been formed. A new way of being has been trialled. In change theory there are 3 steps in the process of change: initiation, implementation and institutionalisation. We have initiated change and implemented changes over the last 3 months, the majority of change projects fail and are not sustained because these changes do not become institutionalised.
We need to reflect on what has brought us peace, what has served us individually and collectively, and then pledge to keep these new habits. I for one want to hold on to the peace that has been created in my inner and my outer world.
Returning to the Angel Numbers I mentioned at the start. The number 20 is symbolic too:
“If you start seeing the number 20 everywhere, know that the angels are guiding you towards a life of love, balance and harmony, so you could be able to accomplish your soul purpose and life mission. … With this number, the angels are sending you a message that you are on the right path in life”.
We have been guided to discover a different way of being. We have created balance and harmony in our day to day existences. We have received a message and I hope we truly listen to it and learn from it.
May peace go with you, today, tomorrow and in the future. May your hearts be full of peace. May your lives be peaceful.
“Peace begins with a smile”.Albert Einstein