It's amazing how little we truly need. It's hard to see that, when we have so much cluttering our lives. There's so much 'noise' around us. Social media. Tv. Computers. Rushing from here to there for appointments, the kids' activities, what the family wants, what the media says we need.
If you were able to strip all of that away, to peel back those pulls on your life, you'd find you don't need much. When you don't need much, then you can focus on what you are supposed to be doing, what is good to do, what is right to do.
It's not easy to get rid of the clutter. (If you are not careful, you may implode and the clutter will go away as a result. I don't recommend that, but it is effective. That's another blog post though.) Challenge yourself to declutter for a small period of time. Maybe vacation week would work for you. Forget the expensive trip. Stay home and see what it's like to not have clutter for a week. In that silence, you will come closer to who you want to be than who you don't.
“The first step in crafting the life you want
is to get rid of everything you don't.”
I am all about having some peace! As a person who has struggled with anxiety, I am keenly interested in learning how to get and maintain peace and calm.
There are lots of little things I do that help me not aggravate or provoke anxious feelings (both mentally and physically). I'm a person who likes to take action so having something 'to do' about it is motivating. For me, certain things increase my anxiety so I don't participate in them: I don't watch the news everyday. I find nothing edifying about it. I watch my sugar intake. I am reducing my caffeine intake (work in progress!)
I do things to help foster peace, such as listen to relaxation tapes. (Here are two of my favorite free ones):
Excel at Life
Meditation Oasis - this one has free podcasts so you can take it with you
One of my newest favorite activities is to put on a relaxation recording and sit down with a notebook to write out the things I am thankful for - the amazing things God has done in my life. Paul encourages this activity:
8 Finally, [b]believers, whatever is true, whatever is honorable and worthy of respect, whatever is right and confirmed by God’s word, whatever is pure and wholesome, whatever is lovely and brings peace, whatever is admirable and of good repute; if there is any excellence, if there is anything worthy of praise, think continually on these things [center your mind on them, and implant them in your heart]. 9 The things which you have learned and received and heard and seen in me, practice these things [in daily life], and the God [who is the source] of peace and well-being will be with you. Philippians 4:8-9
Think on all the good things in your life - events, people, items - and reflect how God took the time to bless you. I like writing mine down - on a note card, in a journal, on a napkin. Look at what He has done and receive the peace that comes with knowing He has you.
I'm a writer... so that means I write a bunch. Blogs are just the pieces that never make it into the final cut.