The first step to inner peace… discover what takes away your peace
Hello, my name is Noah Elkrief, and in this blog post, I’m going to talk about how to find inner peace. So we all want to find inner peace, but what is it? How do we have it? In order to figure out how to find inner peace, you first need to understand what makes you unhappy and takes away your inner peace.
The only thing that ever prevents you from being in peace is believing a thought that says “something is bad”, “something was bad”, or “something would be bad”. That’s it. Allow me to explain that.
The specific thoughts that make you not live with inner peace
When you experience anxiety, it because you are believing “it would be bad if I don’t get what I want” or “it would be bad if something bad happened”. When you experience worrying about what someone thinks, it is because you believe “it would be bad if they have a negative opinion about me”. When you feel insufficient or unworthy, it’s because you believe “It is bad that I act like this, live like this, am like this”. When you feel ashamed about your life, it is because you believe “my situation is bad”. When you feel guilty or sad about something, it’s because you believe “What happened was bad”. When you feel anger or resentment towards others, it’s because you believe “what they did was bad” or “something about them is bad”.
The only thing that creates your unhappiness and takes away your inner peace is believing a negative thought in your mind. That’s it. When these thoughts don’t show up in your mind, or when you are distracted from these thoughts through entertainment, you are already in peace. How to find inner peace? You already have it when your mind is quiet, you’re distracted from thoughts, or you aren’t believing your thoughts.
Why getting what you want can’t give you inner peace
Generally, when we are looking to find inner peace, we ask ourselves the question “Can that give me peace?” But this question is based on the idea that peace can somehow be acquired or achieved. As though something external has the ability to give us peace. But, in order to determine whether something can “give” you inner peace, we must re-frame the question to: “What creates my suffering?” and “Will acquiring/achieving/getting what I want get rid of the cause of my suffering?”
Can wealth, success, power, fame, love, marriage, children, fulfilling potential, finding “right” career, travelling, bigger house or anything else eliminate the thoughts that create your anxiety about the future, anxiety about your job, worries about what others think, worries about what your co-workers and boss thinks, insecurities about your personality and appearance, shame about your living situation, anger about what others do, guilt about what you did in the past, judgments about others, arguments, and everything else that makes you unhappy? Of course not.
Changing anything about our life can’t get rid of all the thoughts in our head that create our suffering and prevent us from living with inner peace. So, if changing our life can’t make us happy, what is the answer to “How to find inner peace?”
The wrong way to deal with these thoughts
Once we discover that our thoughts are the cause of our unhappiness, the tendency of our minds is to create an entirely new set of beliefs about how thoughts are bad. For example, we might think “it’s bad to think negative thoughts”, “it’s bad to have a busy mind”, “it’s bad to think about the future”, “it’s bad to think about the past”, but “it’s bad to have judgments”. But, all of that is just more of the same. All that does is create another layer of suffering. Not only do we now have judgments about our life, but we now have judgments about our judgments.
In addition, mind becomes filled with inner conflict. The internal dialogue can be something like “My mind is so busy, but I just want to stop it!” or “I want to think positive, but my mind keeps being negative!”. But, on a more fundamental level, what’s really going on is: 1) Something happens. 2) Mind judges that thing to be bad. 3) Mind tries to fix the “bad” thing and make it “good”.
This 1,2,3 dynamic is the same whether the subject is about our external life or internal life. For example, 1) A thought pops up. 2) Mind says that the thought is bad. 3) Mind tries to make that thought good by making it positive or getting rid of it.
But, that just results in an endless feeling of lack and not being good enough, in addition to the feeling of internal conflict, seeking, and struggling.
How to end the war in your head and find inner peace
If you want to end the battle in your head, if you want to stop feeling lacking in this moment, if you want to stop this endless journey of trying to fix your life and your mind… just stop in this moment. Stop and just bring your attention back here, bring your attention back to this moment. What’s here right now?
Then notice how mind pops up, stories pop up, thoughts pop up. Let them pop up, it’s okay. Don’t try to stop thinking, don’t try to let go of thoughts, don’t try to improve thoughts. You don’t pick the thoughts which enter your head, do you? Look, be curious, what’s the next thought to pop up in your head? What will it be? Where does it come from? Who put it there? If you picked the thoughts that enter your mind, you would never think of negative thoughts. Why would you? It doesn’t make us happy. If you picked the thoughts that entered your mind, you would know what the next thought to enter your mind will be, but do you? What will the next thought in your mind say?
So stop trying to control your thoughts, just at this moment, and just let thoughts do whatever they want. Give them free rein. Then stop and bring your attention back here. Back to the words on this page.
There is no problem here in this moment
You’re just here sitting, reading, right? We’re just here being, we don’t need to fix anything and improve anything. How do you know that something’s not good enough right now and needs to be fixed? Where does not good enough exist? Where is your nose right now? Can you locate it and touch it for me? Now, where is bad in this moment? Where is there a problem in this moment? Where does problem exist? Can you find it? Can you locate it? Is it here? Can you touch it? Can you hold it? Stop and come back to the words on this page. We’re just here being.
Where is the problem? Where is not good enough? It doesn’t exist. It’s just a story. So notice, what’s the next story to pop up in your head? What’s the next comment, the next question to show up in your head, and then follow that thought for a moment, see where it takes you. Every time a thought pops up in your head, the automatic and unconscious response is to just follow that thought. But, in this moment, stop and bring your attention back to these words.
When you follow the stories in your mind, it seems as though there are problems, things to solve, things to figure out. But, when you bring your attention back to this moment, back to the room you are sitting in, all of a sudden, there is nothing wrong here. Where is your nose in this moment? Now, where is wrong? Where is a problem? Where’s insufficiency in this moment? Where is lack in this moment? How do you know?
Feelings in your body don’t signify anything about your life or who you are
Even if there’s a feeling in your body, how do you know what a feeling signifies? That’s just a story. A feeling is just a feeling, end of story. If I told you that I have a feeling in my arm and that signifies that I am unworthy, lacking, or experiencing a problem, what would you tell me? Well, you would say something along the lines of “What does a feeling in your arm have to do with unworthiness, lack, a problem in your life?” The same is true for any feeling you may have in your head, chest, stomach.
Every time you follow a thought, it takes you into a fantasy world away from here. Away from this room you are. Now, what is real in this moment? What do I see in this moment? What exists right now? Stop and come back to these words. Stop and come back to the room you are in. We’re just here being as we are. Nothing to fix, nothing to improve, nothing to do. Stop and come back. Just bring your attention here.
Allow this moment to be as it is
Who says something’s not good enough? Who says thoughts are bad? Where does that exist? Who says I’m not peaceful enough, where does that exist? Who says the feelings in my body aren’t good enough? We’re just here being. Let your experience be whatever it is. Allow your experience to just be whatever it is. How do you know it’s bad? How do you know the feeling in your body is no good? That’s just an idea, a concept. It doesn’t exist as part of reality. Stop and come back. And just notice what your experience is right here in this moment.
Allow thoughts to do whatever they want. Allow your experience to be whatever it is. Look, is there a problem here, now? Stop and come back here. Is there a problem? Is there something wrong here? Allow everything to be as it is simply because nothing is wrong. Recognize that bad doesn’t exist as part of the facts. Recognize that you don’t know what bad even is. Everybody has a different concept of bad, right, and wrong, but none of it is part of reality. Stop and bring your attention back to this moment.
Reality is freedom and inner peace
When you stop and come back to these words, to this room, to how you feel, see how all of a sudden what remains is lightness, peace, and relaxation. You don’t need to fix anything, you don’t need to improve anything, you don’t need to change your mind, you don’t need to change others. Just allow everything be as it is in this moment. The only thing that ever created your suffering was following stories, that’s it. The only thing that creates suffering is believing a thought that says something is bad.
How to find inner peace? Well, reality doesn’t have the ability to make you unhappy. Reality doesn’t have the ability to take away your peace. Peace is who we are. Peace is our nature in any moment. We just get confused and we follow thoughts. Of course we do that because we have been taught all our life to follow thoughts. But, in this moment, just notice the thoughts that come. And then out of curiosity, stop and bring your attention back here, back to this moment. Not because it is bad to follow thoughts, but just out of curiosity. Allow your experience to just be as it is.
How to find inner peace – discover that it is already here
Inner peace is just our nature. Inner peace is this moment. When we don’t follow our stories about this moment or we don’t believe our stories about this moment, we are left with inner peace.
So I hope you enjoyed this video about how to find inner peace. If you have some questions or you’d like some help with how to find inner peace for yourself, please feel free to contact me. I’ll see you around. Bye.