Does it feel like things are especially crazy at the moment? It seems as though there is only an occasional glimpse of peace and calm out there before another tragedy strikes somewhere in the world. It can be really hard to switch off, hold onto your zen and find your happy place. I find it has become essential to protect yourself and your family, as well as use lots of kindness and compassion in creative ways.
It’s not about blocking it out completely, we all need to accept that we are part of a global community as hard and heartbreaking that is some days. As much as we want to make it all go away, that is simply not possible. Our children especially are growing up and forming their identities in this global community! Technology and social media bring it right into their sacred spaces, and ours! I have found that holding onto your sacred spaces and protecting them is a huge part of holding onto your zen! I love to make sure that our home is our sanctuary from all that is bad in the world.
I have found peace and zen through all of the things below. I have found them excellent ways to protect yourself and your family from becoming consumed with the overwhelming sadness, grief and horror that is often hard to ignore in the world around us:
Switch off the news
Please don’t watch the news on TV, I know I say this a lot. Honestly it is just not necessary, I have not watched the TV news for more than ten years and I am still well informed, educated and way better off emotionally! If you find you can’t stop watching it yourself, please try not to let your children anywhere near it at least. This is a really great post about dealing with what your kids do hear on the news these days.
Filter all of your media
Another one that I carry on about regularly. The media is relentless and it comes as us via more channels than ever before. Filter it pretty please. It is not hard to allow only the media that you know is balanced and helpful into your precious headspace. Consider all of your social media feeds a curated space where you only allow yourself access to news that is helpful and factual. I use my Facebook newsfeed for a balance of information by letting in sources such as Wake Up Project, Huffington Post Australia, The Atlantic, Collective Hub, Doing Good Together and Tiny Buddha.
Lie in the grass
Do you get out into nature enough? Lying in the grass or just taking off my shoes on some grass is one of my favourite ways to feel more peaceful and grounded. It may sound a little woo woo, trust me its lovely. If you can spend at least a few hours a week switched off from anything but the sounds of nature I promise you will find more zen and it will stay with you for when you need it most!
The kitchen can be a bit of a church for me, in the most non-religious way possible! I find it really calming to just spend some time creating, getting inspired within the pages of my cook books and then enjoying the food I have created. I often involve my 6 year old in this too, kids can really get a lot out of learning to love the kitchen, skills for life and quality zen time together.
Gather loved ones
To be honest this one has become a bit of a struggle for me, although when it does happen I am reminded of the power of your tribe when the world outside is particularly scary. My tribe in the real world has shrunk a lot in recent years, although I technically have quite a lot of family, very few of them are a part of our daily lives. I am saddened by the lack of interest, most of my immediate and extended family are what you would call ‘funeral family’ .. you only ever really see them at funerals, during which time you experience a connection and they seem interested in your life, but that does not translate to anything. Spend as much time as you can with the people you love, eating, laughing, talking or doing whatever it is that you makes your hearts happy. This is one of the best remedies for coping with our scary world.
Find a hobby or passion
I love blogging, reading books, taking photos, pimping my photos, entertaining 6 year olds, volunteering, creating in the kitchen, exploring other ways to be creative .. these are some of my hobbies. I think that hobbies, or passions, are a way to immerse yourself in things that really fill your heart and soul with joy. When you are living with passion, doing things that give you joy, you are organically putting more of the good energy out into the world that it so desperately needs. At the same time you are feeding your own soul! win-win!
Leading on from doing the things that you are passionate about, is the area of creativity. I have recently been a part of an online workshop called Inspirit which has opened another area of creativity for me, which is what I signed up for. Sometimes you get into a bit of a creative rut or comfort zone, and need to open up your big beautiful brain to some new possibilities! Creating something is all about the process, the creative zen of being in that process, it is a form of meditation and it is magic!
Find a zen guru
Do you have someone you consider a bit of a Guru or God in the world of meditation, zen and modern spirituality? I have a few who I wholeheartedly recommend, I am not a religious person in the traditional sense, I am always exploring my spiritual side and I respect a lot of leaders in this space. In particular I adore and have found wonderful life changing learnings since connecting with Gabby Bernstein many years ago. I also love Gala Darling and Rebecca Campbell.
Kindness is the answer!
It is obvious yet far from where we are currently are globally .. don’t ever doubt the power of every small kindness you choose daily, it is this that will turn things around for our world. Do what you can every single day to show the world that kindness matters. Speak to everyone you meet with more kindness than you did yesterday, speak to your family this way too, and yourself. The kindness vibrations are felt far and wide and we can create change in this way!
May you always find your own zen, and remember that within you is the most wonderful place of peace and love always.