I know the title may sound confusing because it is the opposite of what is recommended. While it is said one must live in the present and not worry about the future, and forget the past, I beg to differ. Your past is what brings you to your present and present leads to the future.
Sometimes it is necessarily to live in the now and enjoy the moment; however, I would never recommend making irrational decisions that might have drastic consequences. Our past can haunt us in ways that we may not even deem possible.
We might sit in peace thinking ‘Oh! The past is over…time for me to focus on the present’ and BAM…little Ghosts from the past return to haunt you when least expected…when the repercussions can be horrifying, when your life depends on it, that’s when we realize how important the past is because it can’t be separated from our present. Yes, be impulsive, go nuts but be wise and be ready.
So, then what is the point? Should we just never move on?
That is not the point at all, in fact, if you want to truly move on, you need to face your past. Face your demons, do not just bury them and pretend it never happened.
Forgetting your past is not going to help you move on.
Our life is a series of events. These events can be categorized into three categories:
1. Past Events
2. Present Events
3. Future Events
Today’s present is going to be tomorrow’s past. I am not trying to sound mega deep here but it is what it is. Every decision we make today is going to impact our lives tomorrow and the years to come.
How to Deal with a Horrifying Past and Achieve Peace of Mind with it?
It is a known fact that when someone tries to forget a memory, it can have traumatic effects on his or her mental health. It is not good for peace of mind. It can scar a person for life, which is ironic because that is exactly what one tries to escape by forgetting a past memory. Therapists never suggest that it is okay that you cannot remember what happened in 1997.
On the contrary, they will try to use different techniques to get you to remember what it is you have blocked out. Hypnosis is a popular technique that is used to make a person remember a forgotten memory. This is not done to make you feel worse about your life, it is a step to find out what is leading to the chaos in your mind. You can never treat an ailment without a diagnosis.
Hence proven, if you want to move on from your past, come to terms with it, face it. Only then can you ever achieve mental peace.
Nobody said you are not allowed to make mistakes. True life lessons, or at least the ones worth having, are from the mistakes you make. You will not learn much if you never make any mistake. You know why? It means you are not doing much; it means you are not taking any risk.
The mistakes you make are like a treasure map, it paves the path to enlightenment. It would be silly to forget them. That is how you will learn and grow and become the wise, beautiful, classy person you are meant to be!
3. Never, ever be embarrassed of your Past:
Embrace it, it is not embarrassing that you have lived. It is beautiful, life is beautiful, your past, as scary as it was, it is yours to remember. It is going to make you who you are going to be. It is going to be a part of your life. Once you have embraced it, it will bring you mental peace like no other.
Yes, past can be a strange place to visit, but there is no stronger emotion than nostalgia. It can make you smile, cry, it can make you angry and feeling emotions is not a sign of weakness. It is a sign of strength, it is a sign of life, a sign of humanity, and nothing is more beautiful than humanity.
Remember your past, face it, accept it, embrace it and you will come out a strong, more powerful person. More enlightened, and insightful. It will bring you peace of mind, facing the stressors is not going to cause you more stress and anxiety, on the contrary, it shall make you mentally strong, and what comes with mental strength? Say it with me – Peace of Mind.
What is peace of mind? It is that calmness, the lack of chaos within us. It is just what is, PEACE. Just like our bodies require rest, our minds need rest as well. Rest is not just about a full night sleep. It is not just about getting 8 to 9 hours of continuous sleep that will provide you with peace of mind. Yes, sleep is essential to proper functioning of a human being, but what about mental health? What about other areas of our lives that also require rest? Focusing on these areas is also crucial to peace of mind and it helps us fight those sudden jolts of stress and anxiety.
I got inspired to write about this through a post by TheShineApp on Instagram.
What are these 7 Areas that we need to focus on to achieve peace of mind? Let’s find out
1. Physical Rest for Peace of Mind
Sleep is a form of physical rest, but here I am referring to rest from aggressive physical activity. Exercise and staying active, going for a walk, these are all important, and should not be ignored but there needs to be a balanced approach to life. Too much of anything is not good, yes even ice-cream. Again, that Danny Tanner taught me a lot as a Full House obsessed child.
The point is, if you spend an hour or two everyday working out, spend some time giving your body a rest. What is the exercise to rest ratio? There is no hard and fast rule here that needs to be followed. The best advice I can give is, listen to your body. If your body feels pain, do not push it. If your body is sore from too much cardio, lie down. If you had a rigorous training session today, take it slow tomorrow. Take a walk instead of running on that treadmill.
Maybe skip that heavy weightlifting, go for a calming swim instead, or just float, nothing is more calming than that. You get the picture, keep that unnecessary stress and anxiety away by listening to your body, and you will know what it needs. Spend a few hours at the spa, get a pedicure, a relaxing massage, lay down on a recliner and read a book, or sip on some chicken soup. Taking care of yourself and giving your body some rest is necessary for peace of mind.
Along with physical rest, our senses need rest too. Our sense organs are overworked. We are constantly using our eyes, our tongue, our ears, our noses, and our skin. These are things that we take for granted, we do not even realize it because it is just so normal.
Right now, me typing this blog post, I am using all my sense organs without even thinking about it. My fingers are touching the keyboard, my eyes are looking at the screen, my ears can hear a cooking video on YouTube, my mom is watching, and my ears have no choice but to hear it.
Also, my ears hear my typing, which is louder now that I am aware of my senses more than ever. The things you can achieve if you start focusing! My nose is on an overdrive as well, I can smell dinner, which is making me hungry, so the only sense organ that is currently not being used by me – My tongue is also about to get to work.
The whole point of that tangent is that our senses need a rest, just as much as our bodies do. Close your eyes every now and then, lay down alone in peace, and just do nothing. It is not as easy as it sounds, because the society has taught us that hustle is the only correct way of life.
Therefore, it is so important to talk about the importance of rest. It is crucial for peace of mind. It is crucial to keep the stress and anxiety away. Shut down your gadgets, step into a comfortable, dark room, away from noise and just be.
3. Spiritual Rest for Peace of Mind
Rest your mind and focus on your spirit every now and then, meditation helps, reading scriptures helps, connect with your spirit by mindful breathing exercises. Spending some time in nature also allows you to connect with yourself and explore your true spirit.
Praying helps a lot of people feel calmer and more connected with the universe. Regardless of your faith and whether you are a believer or not, praying has been proven to have a wonderful effect on the mental health. Just knowing that there is a presence looking out for you is assuring and helps people put their minds at ease, in other words it leaves room for spiritual rest.
Just like everything else, there is a limit to creativity, the right side of your brain is what is utilized when you are being creative. It is incredible and fun to be creative and just create art, music, ideas but just like your body, your brain needs to rest as well. Do not always feel the need to create or be productive.
It is perfectly okay; in fact it is imperative that you give yourself some time-out from creating and instead spend some time enjoying somebody else’ creation. Enjoy creativity by giving your creativity a rest and read a book created by someone else, enjoy music composed by someone else, or simply watch a show and enjoy somebody else’ vision come to life on screen.
A little Netflix will not hurt anybody. Creative rest is also required for true peace of mind. The pressure to create can also cause stress and anxiety. Rest up.
5. Mental Rest for Peace of Mind
What this basically means is, stop over thinking, stop over analyzing, stop over planning, stop overwhelming yourself with every single little or meaningful thought that may try to make a home in your mind. It is easier said than done, but the key to peace of mind is awareness that you need some.
Awareness that you can create peace of mind, awareness that there are simple ways in which you can teach yourself to feel less stressed out and face stress and anxiety like a champ.
I have quite a few articles about this, I will link one right HERE, and another one right HERE.
6. Emotional Rest for Peace of Mind
It is sad that we live in a world where it has become normal to not show emotions, it has become “cool” to not feel emotions. Some might even brag about not feeling anything, so NEWS FLASH – It is not good for your mental peace. It is NOT normal, it is not cool, and it is certainly not healthy.
Keeping your emotions all bottled up tightly inside you is not going to bring you any peace of mind. Make a habit of expressing your emotions, without worrying about what others might think. First, nobody will judge you for it, secondly, do it for your inner peace.
Crying is therapeutic, crying is natural, people cry when they are overjoyed, we cry when we are sad, it is a natural response to deep emotions. Let it out! Bawl out like a baby, cry into your pillow if you must, then get right back up and move on with your life. Pent up emotions are going to cause a lot of stress and anxiety, if not instantly then eventually. That song from Frozen comes to mind –
Let it go, let it go, don’t hold back anymore, let it go, let it go, turn away and slam the door
Yes, I improvised the lyrics a little, and maybe do not slam doors, or if you must, be gentle. Yes, anger is a real emotion, and it is okay to express it, just try not to break any walls or doors. More assertive, less aggressive. Journaling is a fantastic way to express your emotions without causing a “scene”, if that is something you are worried about.
7. Social Rest for Peace of Mind
Last but not the least, social rest is essential to mental peace. I cannot stress more on the importance of spending some time alone, every day. Not saying you should turn into a hermit and give up socializing, however, at least an hour by yourself every day is good for your mental health.
It is also necessary to strike a healthy balance, if you are on the other end of the spectrum and barely ever meet anybody, perhaps it is time to do that. Find a happy place and find a healthy balance. Hang out with people, and then hang out in your own company as well.
The key to mental peace is to strike a balance. Too much of anything is not good. Too much of creativity, too much sensory stimulation, too much socializing, too much exercise, or even too much spirituality. If you crave peace of mind, you need rest, your body, mind, soul need rest. It is only through rest that you can rejuvenate and energize enough to start afresh and reach out for your dreams. Want to create your perfect life? Rest Up first! After all, you can’t dream unless you sleep.