Growing Wholesome Families

Self Care for Peace
Tuesday, March 21, 2023 by Karen Whiting

Peace can seem elusive but really the foundation of peace is forgiveness, gratitude, and thankfulness. Self care for peace starts with cultivating inner peace. Going to a spa refreshes your body and relaxes your mind. For inner  and more lasting peace, start with selfceare to be healthy and free of negative thoughts, then and choose new ways to create peace within and in various aspects of your life.

Inner peace promotes confidence, flexibility, and courage. It’s easier to make and accept changes, believe you can make a difference (and you really can), and leads to being happier and even joyful.

Cleanse Your Mind and Soul

A spa often starts with a cleansing. So, start with cleansing your heart, mind, and soul. Forgive anyone who hurt you and caused pain even if they did it unknowingly

 and ask (once only) for forgiveness if you hurt someone. Self care for peace begins with forgiveness.

Forgiveness frees your mind and heart and apologies take away control from anyonewho wants to manipulate or have power over you.It does not matter if the person rejects your apology as you gave it and can simply let them know they are free to accept or reject it, but you are finished on that topic. Stop seeking approval for someone who wants control rather than a real relationship.

Have compassion on yourself and through forgiveness have compassion for people who are so hurt inside they lash out at others. Resolve to change your thoughts when thoughts come up that bring back the pain. Make a list of good things to dwell on that bring you joy, or a list of quotes or scriptures that encourage you. Pray for God to fill you with peace. Let your prayers be more powerful.

Make Peace With Yourself

For inner peace, eliminate the negatives in your mind. Then fill your mind, heart, and soul with positives and reasons to be grateful. NOTE: if you have or suspect you have a mental health condition, seek professional help. That’s self care that gratitude creates.

Dissing yourself down or believing negative comments people say to or about is a roadblock to inner peace and a doorway to self-pity. First, stop replaying the comments in your head and replace them with positive affirmations and expressions of gratitude. Be grateful for the beauty of nature, your best qualities and talents, and loved ones in your life.

 Stop comparisons. Someone may be more beautiful, successful, or have a life with more friends and social events, but dwelling on that does not help you. When you start thinking about someone else be thankful for them and then stop thinking about them. Move on to how you can bless someone today with your dazzling smile, comforting words, or listening heart. People have different perspectives and see the world differently and that’s something to celebrate. Many have worked hard for what they achieved or been blessed with opportunities. Celebrate that too. Be grateful you have the ability to bless others.

Make Peace With the Past

Avoid dwelling on regrets of the past. It’s over and there’s a whole new future ahead. You can make new choices. The past may have been filled with abuse, hardships, and failures, and counselling can help you move past it. You cannot change it, but you can choose to replace thoughts about the past with dreams of the future and thoughts of what blessed you this day as well to do something you enjoy such as a walk in the park. You can be grateful the past is over.

Grief is not something that ends, but we can move on and live with peace. It helps to celebrate the lost ones life, remember the good times, and live the way that would make them rejoice.

Cheer for You! It’s Great Self Care for Peace!

Look in the mirror and see the person God created and be thankful he loves you dearly. Smile and see how it light up your eyes. This is only you on the outside and you are lovable. Then look within as that is so much more who you are in reality. Self care for peace includes accepting yourself and being thankful for your uniqueness.

Dig down and find your strengths and positive qualities. Do a self-assessment of what makes you smile, laugh, or relax. Make lists of those activities and thoughts. Then list your best qualities that might include being a good listener, having a good singing voice, or being able to organize things. Thus, include character qualities, talents, and learned abilities. Make a list of these.

Dream a little. What would you like to do or go in the future? What do you need to reach any of those goals. You may think you don’t have the money to go somewhere, but consider going on a mission trip or saving a little each day as even pennies add up. Choose one dream and set it as a goal. Look for ways to work toward that goal and take the steps to reach them.

Look at you list of talents and positive qualities. How can you use those strengths? This can be for your career, volunteering, or in relationships. Each day pray for a way to bless someone with your strengths and at the day’s end thank God for opportunities you took and for blessings you received. These can be tiny like a smile or one positive word, or big like making a new friend.

Be Content

Instead of dwelling on what you want, look around and be thankful for what you have. Be thankful you can read and have access to a computer. Be thankful for sunny days, rain that waters plants, and blooms that brighten the world.

If you need something you can’t afford, consider bartering and saving, and meanwhile be thankful for other blessings. Choose joy by choosing to trust God for your needs and knowing He always wants the best for you. If you need a friend, go places to meet people and pray for a friend. Say hello and ask people how they are doing and then listen. Hang out at places that welcome visitors like churches and libraries. Volunteer to help and you’ll meet people.

Take A+ Steps for Peace in Relationships

Self care for peace grows when you have peaceful, thriving relationships. Take steps to improve interactions.

Acknowledge Your Emotions and Struggles. Emotions are natural, but your reactions are choices. Struggles may be caused by a mistake, nature, or someone else. Identifying helps you choose how to cope with negative emotions and embrace positive emotions.

Admit your part in any struggle or reason for a negative emotion, Forgive yourself. Admit the part someone else caused or that just came from a force of nature or accident. Forgive anyone involved. Cry if you need to as that is cathartic and helps relieve stress. Then wipe away the tears and choose to make a better choice.

Allow time to process a negative emotion and then choose to replace it with a positive one that may simply be hope for a change. Give yourself time to think through the emotion or problems and list all the ways you could react. Then choose the positive way to react.

Analyze what happens. Think through what happened to trigger the emotion or struggle. Think of how to prevent such struggles in the future, including avoiding people who trigger problems. Choose how you can respond differently in the future, such as saying, “Thanks for sharing your thoughts,” to someone who usually criticizes you or hurts your feelings. That helps you let go of the comments and not internalize them or dwell on them. Then give that person a compliment and go on your way.

Act with kindness even to those who treat you unkindly. Often their words and actions flow from pain within them. Soothe it a bit with a kind word, that might simply be you hope they have a good day. Share a joke or fun anecdote so you can laugh with them.

Appreciate people. Take time to thank someone for their smile, thoughtfulness, or blessing. That helps them know they matter and they might respond in kind.

Avoid over charging your time with a calendar that it’s too packed. Learn to say “I would not do it justice, so I must decline, but thanks for asking,” or “No thank, as my calendar is too crammed.”

Choose to Relax

Let go of busyness and relaxing allows your body to rejuvenate, your mind to havemore clarity, and your soul to connect to God. This part of self care for peace refreshes your mind and soul.

> Unplug from electronics and enjoy silence and freedom.
> Just sit back and do nothing.
> Look around and be grateful for your home, nature, and life.
> Take a stroll and enjoy the view.
> Run and give your heart a cardio workout then sit and breath slowly. It can be invigorating and help you relax after using up energy.
> Journal to let your mind dump what has happened and process.
> Journal to dream and reflect on what makes you happy.
> Exercise to increase happy endorphins and help your body stay fit.
> Reflect on scriptures or quotes that encourage you.
> Be grateful for three things.
> Spend time connecting to God in prayer.
> Listen to a favorite playlist.

After relacing choose an activity that inspires you, a hobby that engages your mind or artistic side, or engage with someone who lifts your spirits.

Protect Your Peace for Continued Self Care for Peace

When you have inner peace distractions, words, and news can interrupt it. Try to peace proof your days. Continued self care for peace means making choices that will keep you calm in spite of circumstances and inspire you to make positive choices on how to respond to peace destroyers.

Set boundaries and limit negative news and words. Avoid people who trigger emotional turmoil. Limit time with them or simply state that their words are not uplifting so you will do a different activity and walk away.

Keep your body balanced with eating healthy, sleeping well, and exercising. Have a good morning routine and evening one for selfcare. Plan your menu to include lots of veggies and few sweets. Be sure to include complex carbs that lower inflation, add fiber to your diet to regulate your bowel, energizes you, helps you sleep better, and stabilizes your moods.

Fuel your tank so you are filled with positive thoughts, with ideas like Philippians 4:6 that state: From now on, brothers and sisters, if anything is excellent and if anything is admirable, focus your thoughts on these things: all that is true, all that is holy, all that is just, all that is pure, all that is lovely, and all that is worthy of praise. CEB

Be a Peacemaker

Be generous with smiles, blessings, and encouraging words. There’s never too. much kindness in the world. Every little act of kindness helps soften hearts and brings a little more peace to the people blessed.

Surround yourself with supportive people. They will lift you up and show you how to live life with peace.

Create beauty from ashes. Learn from the past and past peacemakers. Do something positive to grow peace within that replaces the past difficulties. People in Japan changed the site of a nuclear bombing and great destruction to a peace park as a reminder to strive for peace and not power. Live a testimony that shows peace is possible.

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