Are you wondering if you've reached that level of peace with yourself? Are you trying to be on that journey of having that? After reading XO Necole's, "Here's How To Know When You're At Total Peace With Yourself" written by Shellie R. Warren, I went and did a check list to see if I have in fact arrived. In case you don't know, I'm an advocate for self awareness, growth and healing. I've been on a road of self discovery and I've learned a lot on the way, however, I do like to measure how I've grown based on if I'm using what I've learned. Within my growth I believe I'm finding peace but this article did allow me to reflect and see what I've embraced and what I can continue working on.
I have learned that the best way to remain stable and centered is to make sure that I am in a state of peace. That I know how to calm my spirit down. That I can be still instead of busy, just for the sake of doing something. That no matter how hectic, erratic or nerve-wracking things may be around me, I can choose to remain composed, steady and completely undisturbed. Yeah, inner peace ain't nothin' to be slept on. It's one of the truest art forms that there is.
I took a moment and read this article to see what I can check off and what I can actively keep working on. You are welcome to see where you measure up by clicking the link from the above paragraph. So without further a due, lets get into whether I've reached a total state of peace.
1. I DON'T HAVE NO F%&! TO GIVE
The first sign Shellie mentioned that is a tell tale sign of being at peace with myself is: not putting too much importance of what other people say or think about you. For a long time I struggled with that. I would speak with so much conviction that I could careless what anyone thought of me, but it wasn't true. I was lying to myself for the obvious reason; I wanted to believe it. Within the last year I've actually started posting pictures on social media without worrying about all my loves. Or better yet, I've gotten into the habit of posting pictures without having to call out my imperfections. You know the whole "yeah you see my rolls but I look good"and "yeah I know I'm big but I'm beautiful". It's as if I felt like I was talking about it before anyone else could. But if I truly didn't care what others thought in regards to me, I could post pictures without a second thought.
Can I say that I've mastered this area? I believe if I haven't mastered it, I'm pretty close. I recently received a text from my mother speaking on her disappointment in regards to me because of a recent incident during Thanksgiving. In those text messages I was told how I was still a "little girl", how I can't make decisions and I shut down when conflicted. The old me wouldn't be able to pass up the urge to give her a piece of my mind. The mere fact that I've been actively working towards my growth and for her to tear it down within back to back text messages. However, I didn't have the urge this time. In my eyes I felt like I can't change or make you see me any other way but how you choose to see me. It's unfortunate she sees me that way but is that really my burden to wear? I'm happy about who've I've grown to be and I understand if no one else can. It's not their job..only mine.
2. I GO LIVE REGARDLESS OF HOW I LOOK
Shellie's second sign that might mean you're on the road to having peace with yourself is: You're not consume with your looks. Honestly, I believe I've accomplished this step when I had the courage to go live on Facebook while doing my makeup. We are in the time where it's probably rare to see women post pictures on social media without a filter. So for me to be bare face all while I'm perfecting my craft is confidence within itself. When I started my weight loss journey, it was initiated with wanted to look better because I was insecure about my weight. But it wasn't long before I actually felt better too and it gradually progressed into a lifestyle change. Looking good for me was a priority but feeling healthier from a mental, emotional and spiritual level started to become my top priority; my appearance was a bonus.
I can say I haven't had difficulty with this much because I was grounded from an early age that looks aren't everything and doesn't make a person. I learned that by wearing my off brand sneakers in middle school and being teased because I was a late bloomer. Once I was able to see it wasn't the end of the world I quickly knew how to move on to better things. Not to say I don't like to look good but my world doesn't stop if I'm not at my most presentable.
3. I DON'T LOSE SLEEP WHETHER RIGHT OR WRONG
Ms. Warren wrote about how your peace should mean more to you than being right. Listen, I struggled with this for a long time and I can definitely admit that it alleviated a lot of my unhappiness when I stopped the urge of wanting to be right. I use to feel that being right meant something but in actuality at the end of the day it doesn't. If someone doesn't want to take your advice or doesn't want to acknowledge your hard proven facts...they won't. Social media has taught me this lesson. Since Trump and the "fake news" era, people are allowed to make up any narrative that fits their agenda whether wrong, right or indifferent. So to exert all that energy to go back and forth with someone until you become out of character, insulting, and indecent; it just started to not be worth it for me. I would work away thinking I was on cloud nine and that slowly faded away with: "was it even worth it". Sometimes I would even feel like crap afterwards because I got to a point where, in the words of Iyanla Vanzant, "the behavior diminished the message".
It came to a point where I realized it wasn't my job to convince or make anyone agree with me. I had to allow people to believe what they wanted and truthfully, I wasn't always right. I also realized that how I feel now doesn't mean that's how I'll feel a year, month, week, day or hour from now. We're forever evolving beings and we have to learn how to constantly evolve into into or from our circumstances. You can't grow, adapt, or adjust in life if you're hell bent on being right. It keeps you stagnant. I find more peace on stating my opinion and simply accepting others. I mean, who knows, after processing it I might very well gain a different perspective which can lead to a different opportunity.
4. I LEAVE THE DRAMA TO THE QUEENS
Shellie spoke on how she had hilarious friends that can be the life of the party but it doesn't come without compromising some of her peace. I am a firm believer that you attract what you put out in the world. If you're always surrounded with drama, most likely that's the energy you're putting out and you may not realize it. It was at one point in my life that I had the best memories because I had so much fun, but I can also remember that's probably when I had the most issues. I told my husband I use to believe that I was a 'social butterfly' but in reality I was willing to compromise the quality of people I hung around for the sake of having a good time. They could very well feel the same about me because like I stated: we attract what we put out or who we are.
At first, I didn't know if I could because I didn't want to be out of the loop but I realized I had to find joy in just being with myself. I had to back away from a few people and even though I may miss certain traits about them I rather miss it from a far because I don't want to be drained with the constant toxic interactions and communications. I've learned to be okay hanging with myself and enjoying the time I do have with people without overindulging. I know when it's time to leave or when not to engage. I use to be ready for whatever because I was insecure and felt like I had something to prove. Where as now I protect my peace.
5. YES LAWD, YES LAWD, YES LAWD, YES
Being appreciative and grateful is Shellie's 5th step of obtaining total peace. In the words of Kevin Gates: "YES LAWD!" I've come a mighty long way with this step here. I remember I use to be so discontent with my life. It wasn't the woa's of trying to establish myself as an entrepreneur, it was being stressed or dissatisfied with my personal life. I could never see the glass as full, only halfway. I remember when my family and I was renting our old home before we bought our house. My husband and I came to a place where we wanted to move because we outgrew it. We didn't have the room to function smoothly so we wanted out but I quickly put that notion on hold. I thought to myself and came to an understanding: "if you can't make the best of where you're at now, then moving somewhere new will only be a temporary fix". We had a nice size front and back yard. We had nice size rooms but we only had one bathroom.
I wanted my own home and I knew if we moved and rented somewhere else it was just going to slowed down the process. So how about I make the best of our situation. I started to accept the house and find ways to have a functional space. I started to take care of our place like I already owned it. I decluttered and got rid of unnecessary items and started to appreciate what we had. That alone changed the way we saved, budget and before long we were buying our own house.
6. THE ONLY PERSON I CAN CONTROL IS ME
The next step is relinquishing the need to control other people and circumstances around you. I can say I didn't have so much of a struggle with trying to control other people but I did struggle with having resentment in on not having control of how people treated me. It's ironic because although I could control how people treated me by simply having boundaries, I wouldn't apply it. But I'd be so caught up and upset about the person that I didn't have control of. It's almost as if I expected them to know how to treat me without me doing anything to influence that. I went to a counseling session one time and ranted about my husband's ex wife and how she was trying to be a blatant pain in my ass. My counselor left me with these jewels that I kept dear to me from that point on: "you can't control who someone else is or what someone else does, but you can control how you respond and how you chose to deal with them".
I've been at peace ever since..well once I actually started to apply it. I feel like you relinquish your control when you allow yourself to believe that other people affect your life. I acted as if my life couldn't be happy and enjoyable because my husband's ex wife was going to do everything in her power to sabotage. However, once I stopped giving her energy, attention and controlled my reaction, she became more and more irrelevant and I was more at peace.
7. RESPECT OVER POPULARITY
I remember listening to Rapsody and hearing how she read right through me when she was referencing how she rather be respected when she steps in a room. I never gave it much thought on the importance of being liked or being respected. Shellie wrote how the total peace with yourself is reflected by how you don't compromise your respect to be accepted or liked. I really channeled this logic with my relationships with men because I wasn't one to feel as though I had to be in a click with women. You either like me or you don't but the insecure girl in me felt less worthy if men didn't. Now I'm big on establishing respect regardless if it means that I won't be liked because it's about setting boundaries and showing people how to deal with me.
8. I'M NOT EVERYONE'S CUP OF TEA
Now I have definitely came a long way with accepting this. I mean I'm a cool girl, right?! Who wouldn't like me? Ummm......plenty. I had to understand that it's not even personal at times. Sometimes when people can't understand you and just put you in a box, it can be off putting. However, I had to learn that's not my problem and it's okay if you're not everyone's cup of tea. I remember moving to Charleston, SC to be with my husband and really trying to connect with people and it never really ended well. While trying to pursue my different ventures I was in hopes of networking and building a rapport with people here in the area. However I didn't feel as though I fit in and the connections didn't feel genuine. I got really down about it and allowed it to affect my how I saw myself and even affected me pursuing my dreams. I had to come to a point to understand that the only person that can make me feel validated is me. And once I came to that realization it made it easier to accept who was for me and who wasn't.
9. MY ME TIME
Shellie's #9 was seeing straight through me. She speaks on people having time to unplug, relax and reenergize themselves by creating your home life as a peaceful sanctuary. She also mentioned how meditating, resting, and vacationing is a greenlight for the ultimate peace. I'm in the process of decorating and giving my home that energy that speaks to my home being my peace, and I can admit so far I can be at home all day. I also don't have a problem with taking a much needed break from social media, social events or anything that allows me a space of quietness. But I can also admit that it took awhile for me to get here. I do believe Shellie is on to something when she writes about people who can't be still, "I always wonder if they're afraid to be alone with their own thoughts." I use to use being a social butterfly as an excuse to always stay in the mix of things. It's always a friend to visit, an event to go to, or place to be and the moment I couldn't I was bored, depressed and lonely. I just didn't want to think too long or too hard about issues I wasn't ready to come to terms with. Now when I find myself troubled there's nothing I rather do than to meditate and find my quiet place to think and gain clarity on the moves I need to take.
10. BE PRESENT, DON'T WORRY
This may be the point where I get off. I will give myself a pat on the back for the progress I've made but I can honestly say I'm in the process of working on. I can say I'm on the road to total peace but I'm not at the destination when it comes to being present. I have to constantly redirect my energy to being in the moment and not worrying about what's to come. I saw how anxious it was making me and unfocused I became on the actual things I should have my focus on. Not being present affected my role as a mother, wife and entrepreneur. I can definitely see the difference now that I've become more intentional with being in the moment. I'm focused, appreciative, affectionate and less anxious.