Peace: Quarter year review

 
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You may remember back at the beginning of the year, I chose the word peace for my year, a la Susannah Conway.

So, three months on, how am I making space in my life for peace?  Well, firstly, I guess it’s expanded.  The underlying essence is still about making a life more peaceful but it’s uncurled to include exploring spirituality, getting in touch with myself, getting in touch with nature, the seasons, the moon, the stars etc and doing lots of creative stuff.  It also includes letting go of judging myself, building up self care routines and letting go of things I cannot control.  If I am waging war on myself, I can never been at peace.

I have a pinterest board which is helpful in reminding me that I am cultivating a more peaceful life as well as for pulling together ideas to explore.

I am doing regular tarot readings and I’ve completed the Alternative Tarot Course which was really interesting and helped to develop and hone my skills at reading the cards.  As I’ve mentioned before, this is a really good way for me to check in with myself and figure out what’s going on in my subconscious.  I’ve also got a pack of beautiful medicine cards, I’ve not used them much but the idea is the same.

I have got a few crystals which I’m using to set intentions and to help me remember those intentions.  For example, I had an important meeting this morning and I wanted to be calm, articulate and level headed.  Last night, I lit a candle, held the crystals and said that was my intention for the meeting.  I put the crystals in my pocket and they just acted as a reminder.  So when I started to ramble, they prompted me to stop, breathe and start again more clearly.

I’ve had weekly check in sessions with myself, mostly at a local cafe.  I have a stack of question cards to use as prompts to help me reflect on the week, how I’ve coped, what went well and the week ahead.  Ensuring I keep space in my week for this is really important in helping me to process emotions and keep my life ‘peaceful’ or more balanced.

As part of my checking in with myself, I have also done some work around fighting (systems mostly) and trying to find a way of moving out of the state where fighting is my default mode.  I’ve done some work to let my ‘inner warrior’ rest whilst knowing that when I need to fight, she’ll be there (and be well rested).  Staying on fight mode is not sustainable.  Its not a criticism of myself, I had hell of a lot of things to be fighting for; house, wheelchair, work, physical health care, mental health care, benefits… so many things you’d normally take for granted… But I have a house, I have a wheelchair, I’m going through the process to leave work so I’m in a much better position now.

Cultivating peace is also about the little things, noticing a bird singing outside the window or managing to find the time and energy to read and enjoy reading.

Challenges to my peace include the upstairs neighbours’ dogs. There are two and they bark whenever their owners are out.  When I catch myself tensing up and getting particularly irritable I notice it and physically uncurl and take a deep breath.  The dogs are still annoying but I’ve interrupted my unconscious reaction which helps stop it from building.  I think knowing my word is peace is helping me to notice when I am getting wound up by this kind of thing.

I know I have a long way to go with this but I do feel I’ve made progress since I set the intention to bring more peace into my life.

Did you set any intentions at the beginning of the year? How are you getting on?

 

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4 thoughts on “Peace: Quarter year review”

  1. Helen, based on your recommendation I set an intention for this year as well. Mine has fallen by the wayside a little bit, but one thing I have been trying to do is to meditate every day for at least five minutes, preferably in the morning and the evening before bed. It helps with anxiety. Thich Nhat Hanh writes about using everyday public noises that you have no control over (e.g. phones ringing, alarms) as a call to meditate. I find that this works for me too. I was wondering if you could use the barking dogs as a reminder to be present and focus on peace in other forms?

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