What Finding Peace Means

What Finding Peace Means

Peace is often associated with balance, decluttering, meditation and more. If you have been cleaning out your room, participating in meditative retreats, ordering acai bowls more than usual, you may be trying to obtain some form of peace in your life. Your therapist engages you compassionately and mindfully as you sip herbal teas and go into slo-mo in the things that you do (outside of work hours).

Perhaps, like the pursuit of happiness, peace has to be sought. Peace can mean conflict-free within the political and societal contexts, but here it will lean towards meanings that include “away from disturbances, quiet, still, healthy and at ease”4. For many people, these keywords associated with peace are what they have been or are currently seeking. Although they look good on paper or theoretically, they are often said to be difficult to pursue and achieve.

Some of us may visualise a retreat deep in a forest somewhere when we think of seeking peace. We may also think of a person such as a monk, and other external factors that are part of the setup that we think we need in order for us to “feel zen” or “get into the zone”1. On the other hand, you may have tried to tap into your inner resources such as getting into a certain posture such as sitting down with your back hunched or upright, noticing your breath as you inhale and exhale at your pace and comfort, while going into a meditative state or meditation, or other similar states that make you feel “grounded”3.

Attending to our thoughts is but one of the many components of finding peace and it can be affiliated or not affiliated to religions. For those of us who have been practising forms of getting yourself to a relaxed mode, you may have already accepted thoughts that are considered intrusive or distracting, and instead of filtering them out, you allow them to come as they are while you can simply notice them without attempting to interpret them. For example, you find a comfortable setting and ease yourself into a safe position. As you engage your five senses with your surrounding and your self amidst the environment, for some reason, you wonder what you would be having for lunch. When you catch yourself having thoughts on your upcoming lunch, you may feel a tinge of frustration, guilt and other emotions that you interpret as needing to shake “unrelated” or “unhelpful” thoughts that do not seem to be in direct connection with peace.

Except, of course, the unwelcomed thoughts are uninvited because you determine them to be so.


Case (*names have been changed to protect the identities of individuals)

James feels restless all the time. He works 9 to 5 and does not do the weekends. At work, he tries to use every minute of his waking time to do something and this pays off as he gets recognition and praises from his bosses and peers. Many people admire James for working relentlessly and with much enthusiasm. James knows he is more anxious than enthusiastic. His body wants to rest but his mind tells him to keep going and somehow, he manages to keep his body going. James’ restlessness is felt by his family and close friends. Some have tried to ask James if everything is ok as they notice that he is unable to sit still and hold proper conversations for more than a minute. James also appears to look worried most of the time and struggles to get a decent sleep in terms of both quantity and quality. James thinks this is normal as he knows many other people who also have similar sleep problems.


Not having peace can show up in our physical and mental health. You may start to feel more stressed as the days go by and you are unable to concentrate on daily tasks or things that matter to you. You may experience a lot of “noise” in your head, causing you to be forgetful, confused, develop migraines, lose appetite, have bouts of gastric pain and so on. These symptoms create disruptions to your well-being by interfering with your sleep, appetite, daily functionality, mood regulation, among many other effects on the maintenance of your homeostasis2.

While factors responsible for having not having peace is subjective and can vary from person to person, the following are some tried-and-tested ways for gaining peace:

  • Practise forgiveness and acceptance. This is for yourself, and not because someone asked for it. When you learn to let go of what haunts you, you do not allow it to occupy your mental space, hence allowing what you really want into your life. Accepting does not mean the past or wrongdoings are forgotten. Instead, acceptance helps you to move on by focusing on your present moments. After all, life is a journey and the road ahead is full of moments.
  • Practise gratitude. You have probably heard of people having gratitude journals and if you have not started on one, give it a go. It is often easy to simply downplay something and even more so when you have not experienced its benefits or flaws. When you choose to work on getting what you want, your mind and body prepare themselves to work with you towards your chosen goal(s). Seek a buddy or life coach for this if you have a tendency to give up easily or get distracted and demotivated after a while.
  • Take breaks whenever you need, but get back on your process in order to progress. Do things that make you happy and make space for things that require you to challenge your comfort zone at times.

There are certainly many things you can do to attain the peace that you want. There will be times where you are excited to try something new or interesting, there will also be times where you feel nothing seems to be working. Stay on track, pursue goals that you have set for yourself and by yourself, and you will achieve the peace that you want.



  1. Anderson, R. (2004). A definition of peace. Peace and Conflict: Journal of Peace Psychology, 10(2), 101–116. https://doi.org/10.1207/s15327949pac1002_2
  2. Libretti, S., & Puckett, Y. (2023). Physiology, Homeostasis. Retrieved from https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/books/NBK559138/#
  3. Pidkameny, K. (2021). Stay grounded: A guided journal for times of change, upheaval, or stress. CICO Books: London, UK.
  4. Vincentry, S. (2022). How to find inner peace and happiness in the chaos. Retrieved from https://www.oprahdaily.com
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