The state of the world seems to be out of control. How can little old me help the world experience happiness? How can small old me help others experience peace? More importantly, how do I find peace for myself?
Turning on the news is overwhelming. Images of disease, famine, poverty, and war are enough to wear down anyone. On top of that, media has a way of separating people into camps making it easy to point fingers at the other group. It’s like we’re all addicted to playing the blame game.
However, we all have the option to decide on adopting positive or negative states of mind, to use positive or negative words and to take positive or negative actions. It begins by making a conscious decision to change.
Here are three simple things we can do to begin finding peace with the current state of the world.
One: Take breaks from the media
At a time when everyone is always plugged in, unplug. Schedule time on your calendar, if you must, but take the time to turn off the barrage of negativity.
Instead of drowning in a Twitter feed scroll, take the time to walk in nature, enjoy face-to-face time with friends and family and decide to opt-out of the news cycle broadcasted on social media platforms.
Other ways to opt-out include unsubscribing from newsletters you don’t read, turn off notifications on your cell phone and laptops, or completely sign out of all social media accounts – delete them if you like.
While in the car, turn off the radio. Or if you have books on audio or mindfulness podcasts, listen to those instead.
It’s important to remember that you have control over what media you consume. I’m not suggesting ignoring the news altogether, but there’s no reason to overdose on it.
Tip: Check out these six apps to begin your opting-out journey!
Two: Meditate every day
“A pure world cannot be seen with an impure mind and an impure world cannot be seen with a pure mind.” ~Venerabe Geshe Kelsang Gyatso Rinpoche
We must take the time to do the inner work so we can do the external work of serving others and helping them to reach their real potential. This work should feel like a high motivation, and not a burden, scheduling media breaks will help with your meditation practice. Can you imagine adding five more minutes to your meditation practice instead of cruising Facebook? Feels good, doesn’t it?
There is a reason spiritual practices have meditation techniques baked into their fabrics, and it’s because for us to experience world peace, we must first find peace within ourselves.
If we sit down and honestly examine our hearts, I think we’ll find that there is still work we can do. We’re always asking how do I find peace; I know I am. I’m guilty of allowing my ego to get the best of me. However, meditation reveals my flaws so that I can address them; it places the responsibility of changing the world directly into my hands.
Tip: Use MeetUp to find a meditation group in your area!
Three: Get active and get involved
Opting out and practicing meditation is great, honestly. But I think when we actively engage in our communities is when we see our practice flourish. The practice of opting-out and meditation clear our minds in preparation to cherish others.
There are many ways to get involved either by volunteering time and resources or by donating financially.
Look for organizations with mission statements you would like to support. Then merely reach out and ask how you can help. The demand for assisting hands is always high since funding for organizations is frequently cut, and many teams run on shoe-string budgets.
Tip: Check out VoluteerMatch.org to find volunteer opportunities in your area!
Each day is a new opportunity to share kindness and to develop inner peace. To find peace in the state of the world, we must choose compassion, do the inner work and volunteer our time serving others.
The outer is a reflection of the inner. We are all in this together, and if one being is suffering, then I suffer. Pure happiness and inner-peace are available to me and all beings, here and now. How do I find peace, this is how I find peace.
- Get Active
Previously published on Goodmenproject.com