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How To Be Zen: Important Strategies To Maintain Your Inner Peace

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What does the peace of life mean?

The main source of peace is within human beings and is, in fact, an inner feeling. However, environmental and external factors are also influential. Peace means enjoying life, hoping for the future, meeting social needs, as well as security and social support.

The presence of people who love you or you love, actually adds to your quality of life. Lack of anxiety disorders and depression, all play an important role in mental health and relaxation.

A still from the film Kung Fu Panda, featuring master Shifu meditating. Representational image. Photo credit: Quotesgram.

Relaxation is like any other job that requires skill and training. It must be learned. There are some ways to help one stay calm in adverse life situations.

Here are 17 ways for the same:

1. Think Positive

Some people always see the half-empty glass and look at everything negatively. Try to pay attention to the beauties of life—laughter of a child, seeing an old friend, song of a bird, sunrise, health, vitality, etc.

These are examples of some positive and bright points of life.  According to the law of attraction, whatever you have in your mind will affect your life.

2. Change Your Outlook

Put aside excesses in your beliefs. Insisting on your own beliefs, regardless of the opinions of others, leads to conflict between you and others. Absolute thinking causes a person to behave in a reactive and hasty manner.

These behaviors are themselves a source of stress and anxiety; and lead to deprivation in life.  Strengthening your sense of humor is a way to express your opinions by avoiding stress.

3. Give Your Mind A Break

There are places where we feel more relaxed and we want to be there when we relax. Close your eyes and imagine a calm and beautiful place in your mind. Try to pay attention to all the details.

For example, imagine yourself walking along the beach. As you walk on the sand, feel the beach waves on your feet, paying attention to the glare of the sun on the surface of the water, the gentle breeze and the sound of birds.

Positive visualisation calms the mind.

4. Live In The Present

To achieve peace of mind, you must be able to live in the present.  Dealing with worry about the future or regretting the past, regardless of the time you lose, causes you anxiety. Also, this worry does not help you at all.

5. Make Time For Yourself

Try to take enough time off, for yourself. Go out and take a walk in a relaxing environment and enjoy nature. Pay attention to the sound of birds and enjoy seeing the beauties.

Engage in activities that you enjoy. For example, playing with animals and spending time with them is a great way to relieve stress.

6. Deep Breathing Increases Relaxation

One of the quickest and easiest ways to achieve relaxation is to take deep breaths. When you focus on your breathing, your brain focuses on how you inhale and exhale. As a result, you become distracted from your worries.

Spending a short time relaxing during the day can reduce stress. Concentrate on your breathing and feel all the anxiety go out of you.

7. Listen To Music

Listening to music is soothing. It does not matter what style of music you listen to as soon as it calms you down.

Feeling and hearing the vibrations and sound fluctuations will have a positive effect on your psyche, so that the brain waves go from turbulent to calm, your stress will be minimised and your body’s defense system will be strengthened.

Representational image. Photo credit: Viplove Saini, Flickr.

8. Massage Is A Way To Relax

Most people use massage to achieve a general sense of physical and mental relaxation. When massaging certain parts of the body, attention is paid to stimulating the nerves of the areas which are tensed, making the person experience more relaxation and reducing stress.

9. Acceptance Is The Way Forward

Accepting what we do not have and have no control over, is essential to achieving peace. Sometimes, we face something unexpected in life, such as the death of a spouse, deception or infidelity.

Sometimes, problems can be solved, but sometimes we have no choice but to accept the crisis.

10. Love Yourself

The more you love yourself, the more peace of mind you will have and the more comfortable you will feel. This will increase your self-confidence and make you feel less insecure.

As a result, your inner peace increases. Talk to yourself and use positive and hopeful sentences. Believe in yourself and keep reminding yourself that everything will work out.

11. Be Honest With Yourself

Problems arise when a person does not act as he wants. Sometimes, he chooses one way and society offers him another way. Sometimes, it forces him.

But. it is important to be able to balance what you want with what the community wants, and to choose the best option.  Finding ways to balance inner goals with the path you ultimately choose, is one of the keys to peace of mind.

12. Aim To Achieve Peace

Having a goal in life motivates you to keep going, albeit with a goal that is clear, achievable, and realistic. Goals that are out of reach can confuse you. Try to get an accurate estimate of your limitations and abilities before setting a goal.

13. Forgiveness

Forgiving others is always accompanied by a good feeling. Retaliation will keep your anger and rage going. Forgiveness means dealing with the negative feelings that have arisen in you.

One of the most important consequences of forgiveness is to achieve peace for the person. In fact, by forgiving another person, one can consider themselves worthy of peace.

14. Communication With Others

One of the greatest and most enjoyable moments of life is when we are with those we love. Whenever you feel anxious, visit a friend or family member and talk to them.

15. Do Not Rush

When we try to reach our desires and standards as soon as possible, we are actually putting ourselves under unnecessary pressure.

Deal with your impatience, be aware and enjoy every moment of your life.  The dos and don’ts only make us feel more pressured in life. They will never lead us to inner peace and tranquility.

16. Do Not Compare

The main thing in life is what you want, so do not compare yourself with others and focus only on the path of your life. We all have patterns for ourselves to follow. Each person’s circumstances, possibilities, and experiences are different.

17. Avoid Blaming Yourself

Failure does not mean your inability. Be flexible in the face of life’s problems. Stop blaming yourself if you make a mistake.  Examine the reasons for blaming yourself and consider failure as a way to learn and experience. Estimate your limitations.

The above mentioned tips can only bring you peace of mind if you have already relieved your restlessness and depression.Mental disorders and depression can only be treated by seeking psychological counseling.

The counselor will help you achieve peace of mind by identifying the causes of the conflict and eliminating it

Featured image, taken from Pxfuel, is for representational purposes only.
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An ambassador and trained facilitator under Eco Femme (a social enterprise working towards menstrual health in south India), Sanjina is also an active member of the MHM Collective- India and Menstrual Health Alliance- India. She has conducted Menstrual Health sessions in multiple government schools adopted by Rotary District 3240 as part of their WinS project in rural Bengal. She has also delivered training of trainers on SRHR, gender, sexuality and Menstruation for Tomorrow’s Foundation, Vikramshila Education Resource Society, Nirdhan trust and Micro Finance, Tollygunj Women In Need, Paint It Red in Kolkata.

Now as an MH Fellow with YKA, she’s expanding her impressive scope of work further by launching a campaign to facilitate the process of ensuring better menstrual health and SRH services for women residing in correctional homes in West Bengal. The campaign will entail an independent study to take stalk of the present conditions of MHM in correctional homes across the state and use its findings to build public support and political will to take the necessary action.

Saurabh has been associated with YKA as a user and has consistently been writing on the issue MHM and its intersectionality with other issues in the society. Now as an MHM Fellow with YKA, he’s launched the Right to Period campaign, which aims to ensure proper execution of MHM guidelines in Delhi’s schools.

The long-term aim of the campaign is to develop an open culture where menstruation is not treated as a taboo. The campaign also seeks to hold the schools accountable for their responsibilities as an important component in the implementation of MHM policies by making adequate sanitation infrastructure and knowledge of MHM available in school premises.

Read more about his campaign.

Harshita is a psychologist and works to support people with mental health issues, particularly adolescents who are survivors of violence. Associated with the Azadi Foundation in UP, Harshita became an MHM Fellow with YKA, with the aim of promoting better menstrual health.

Her campaign #MeriMarzi aims to promote menstrual health and wellness, hygiene and facilities for female sex workers in UP. She says, “Knowledge about natural body processes is a very basic human right. And for individuals whose occupation is providing sexual services, it becomes even more important.”

Meri Marzi aims to ensure sensitised, non-discriminatory health workers for the needs of female sex workers in the Suraksha Clinics under the UPSACS (Uttar Pradesh State AIDS Control Society) program by creating more dialogues and garnering public support for the cause of sex workers’ menstrual rights. The campaign will also ensure interventions with sex workers to clear misconceptions around overall hygiene management to ensure that results flow both ways.

Read more about her campaign.

MH Fellow Sabna comes with significant experience working with a range of development issues. A co-founder of Project Sakhi Saheli, which aims to combat period poverty and break menstrual taboos, Sabna has, in the past, worked on the issue of menstruation in urban slums of Delhi with women and adolescent girls. She and her team also released MenstraBook, with menstrastories and organised Menstra Tlk in the Delhi School of Social Work to create more conversations on menstruation.

With YKA MHM Fellow Vineet, Sabna launched Menstratalk, a campaign that aims to put an end to period poverty and smash menstrual taboos in society. As a start, the campaign aims to begin conversations on menstrual health with five hundred adolescents and youth in Delhi through offline platforms, and through this community mobilise support to create Period Friendly Institutions out of educational institutes in the city.

Read more about her campaign. 

A student from Delhi School of Social work, Vineet is a part of Project Sakhi Saheli, an initiative by the students of Delhi school of Social Work to create awareness on Menstrual Health and combat Period Poverty. Along with MHM Action Fellow Sabna, Vineet launched Menstratalk, a campaign that aims to put an end to period poverty and smash menstrual taboos in society.

As a start, the campaign aims to begin conversations on menstrual health with five hundred adolescents and youth in Delhi through offline platforms, and through this community mobilise support to create Period Friendly Institutions out of educational institutes in the city.

Find out more about the campaign here.

A native of Bhagalpur district – Bihar, Shalini Jha believes in equal rights for all genders and wants to work for a gender-equal and just society. In the past she’s had a year-long association as a community leader with Haiyya: Organise for Action’s Health Over Stigma campaign. She’s pursuing a Master’s in Literature with Ambedkar University, Delhi and as an MHM Fellow with YKA, recently launched ‘Project अल्हड़ (Alharh)’.

She says, “Bihar is ranked the lowest in India’s SDG Index 2019 for India. Hygienic and comfortable menstruation is a basic human right and sustainable development cannot be ensured if menstruators are deprived of their basic rights.” Project अल्हड़ (Alharh) aims to create a robust sensitised community in Bhagalpur to collectively spread awareness, break the taboo, debunk myths and initiate fearless conversations around menstruation. The campaign aims to reach at least 6000 adolescent girls from government and private schools in Baghalpur district in 2020.

Read more about the campaign here.

A psychologist and co-founder of a mental health NGO called Customize Cognition, Ritika forayed into the space of menstrual health and hygiene, sexual and reproductive healthcare and rights and gender equality as an MHM Fellow with YKA. She says, “The experience of working on MHM/SRHR and gender equality has been an enriching and eye-opening experience. I have learned what’s beneath the surface of the issue, be it awareness, lack of resources or disregard for trans men, who also menstruate.”

The Transmen-ses campaign aims to tackle the issue of silence and disregard for trans men’s menstruation needs, by mobilising gender sensitive health professionals and gender neutral restrooms in Lucknow.

Read more about the campaign here.

A Computer Science engineer by education, Nitisha started her career in the corporate sector, before realising she wanted to work in the development and social justice space. Since then, she has worked with Teach For India and Care India and is from the founding batch of Indian School of Development Management (ISDM), a one of its kind organisation creating leaders for the development sector through its experiential learning post graduate program.

As a Youth Ki Awaaz Menstrual Health Fellow, Nitisha has started Let’s Talk Period, a campaign to mobilise young people to switch to sustainable period products. She says, “80 lakh women in Delhi use non-biodegradable sanitary products, generate 3000 tonnes of menstrual waste, that takes 500-800 years to decompose; which in turn contributes to the health issues of all menstruators, increased burden of waste management on the city and harmful living environment for all citizens.

Let’s Talk Period aims to change this by

Find out more about her campaign here.

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A former Assistant Secretary with the Ministry of Women and Child Development in West Bengal for three months, Lakshmi Bhavya has been championing the cause of menstrual hygiene in her district. By associating herself with the Lalana Campaign, a holistic menstrual hygiene awareness campaign which is conducted by the Anahat NGO, Lakshmi has been slowly breaking taboos when it comes to periods and menstrual hygiene.

A Gender Rights Activist working with the tribal and marginalized communities in india, Srilekha is a PhD scholar working on understanding body and sexuality among tribal girls, to fill the gaps in research around indigenous women and their stories. Srilekha has worked extensively at the grassroots level with community based organisations, through several advocacy initiatives around Gender, Mental Health, Menstrual Hygiene and Sexual and Reproductive Health Rights (SRHR) for the indigenous in Jharkhand, over the last 6 years.

Srilekha has also contributed to sustainable livelihood projects and legal aid programs for survivors of sex trafficking. She has been conducting research based programs on maternal health, mental health, gender based violence, sex and sexuality. Her interest lies in conducting workshops for young people on life skills, feminism, gender and sexuality, trauma, resilience and interpersonal relationships.

A Guwahati-based college student pursuing her Masters in Tata Institute of Social Sciences, Bidisha started the #BleedwithDignity campaign on the technology platform Change.org, demanding that the Government of Assam install
biodegradable sanitary pad vending machines in all government schools across the state. Her petition on Change.org has already gathered support from over 90000 people and continues to grow.

Bidisha was selected in Change.org’s flagship program ‘She Creates Change’ having run successful online advocacy
campaigns, which were widely recognised. Through the #BleedwithDignity campaign; she organised and celebrated World Menstrual Hygiene Day, 2019 in Guwahati, Assam by hosting a wall mural by collaborating with local organisations. The initiative was widely covered by national and local media, and the mural was later inaugurated by the event’s chief guest Commissioner of Guwahati Municipal Corporation (GMC) Debeswar Malakar, IAS.

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