Deep inside, at our very core, lies a natural centre of absolute stillness and peace which can bring a profound sense of wellbeing. This is the spiritual self –but how do we get in touch with it and experience it in our daily lives? It starts by appreciating who and what we really are – that, in the words of Pierre de Chardin, ‘We are not human beings having spiritual experiences, but spiritual beings having human experiences.’ There’s a story of a young philosophy student who goes to see his professor. ‘Please help me,’ he pleads. ‘I’ve got a question that’s eating me alive.
I can’t sleep through worrying about it. Tell me, do I exist?’ The professor turns to him with a withering look and replies, ‘Who wants to know?’ It soon becomes apparent that you are more than just a collection of bones held together by muscle and soft tissue, and more than a collection of thoughts and emotions. Something in you is aware not only of what you are thinking but also that you are thinking. This is it – the Spiritual Self. When we realise that we are spiritual beings in human form, it’s like waking from a dream. We can step back, see everything in its true perspective, deal with frustration, and find peace and understanding in an imperfect world. You are now ready for the final breakthrough from which genuine confidence, self-esteem and peace of mind flow.
‘You are greater than you know, and all is well.’ Kahlil Gibran
‘We can cope with anything if we have the tools and can draw on our inner power. But there is no sun without rain; no joy without spiritual awareness; and no growth without the knowledge that help is always available and we can deal with life’s difficulties.’ Joy Ward
Allow 15-20 minutes for this exercise. Sit or lie down and relax. Notice any physical sensations, then become aware of the one who is observing those sensations. Say, ‘I am not these sensations. I am not this body.’ Now be aware of your thinking. Observe your thoughts. Turn your attention to the one who is observing the thoughts. Say, ‘I am not these thoughts. I am not my thoughts.’ Then become aware of your emotions. Turn your attention to the one who is observing those emotions. Say, ‘I am not these emotions. I am not my emotions.’ Finally become aware of yourself as a spiritual being. Imagine yourself connected to an all powerful Universal Mind that wants the best for you, is guiding and supporting you and bringing you peace. Enjoy this feeling for a few minutes, then open your eyes. Sit quietly for a few moments before returning to your activities.
You can choose peace anytime you wish. Just take a few deep breaths and let them out
slowly. Remind yourself that you are a spiritual being, and repeat the affirmation:
‘I can choose peace instead of this.’ You cannot be forced to give up your peace of mind unless you are willing to surrender it. At the root of most anxiety is the wish that the world were different. Let go of this and you immediately feel more at peace. Stop judging. Display these words on your Wall of Confidence. Make them your prime motto:
Everything is exactly as it should be, and always works out for the best. I am at peace with myself and the world. Nothing and no one can destroy my peace.
Give up being dishonest. Confident people have no need to be untruthful, so always keep
your word. For the next 24 hours don’t allow a single untruth to pass your lips. Then carry on for another 24 hours and so on. If you fail, just start again and never give up. 362 Live in the present moment and you are well on the way to lasting peace of mind. Right now, probably all is well in your world, but the moment you allow your thoughts to wander to the past your inner peace is shattered until you bring it back to the present moment. The only moment over which you have any control is now. Every moment, even the most ordinary is a precious gift. When you’re clear on what’s really important and focus on what you can do right now, the future has a habit of taking care of itself.
Imagine what it would be like if you were connected to a Universal Intelligence that works tirelessly for your benefit, offering you all the confidence you need. Imagine it guiding and supporting you, nourishing your mind and body and taking care of you. Imagine you could live securely in the knowledge that everything that happens is for your ultimate benefit. I am at one with the Intelligence that created me. I am at peace.
Occasionally you may have felt yourself slipping back a little from time to time. This is perfectly normal; I call this the ‘ratchet effect’ – two big steps forward, then one small step back. But if you hang on to your resolve, the overall trend is always upwards. Be patient, keep your eye on the ball, treat setbacks with equanimity and persevere. I recently spent a fortnight at a holistic holiday centre in Greece where I met a determined young woman who was well on the road to greater confidence and self-esteem. As she reflected on her recent experiences, she uttered the words you will find below. When you become more confident and look back on your life, her sentiments will be yours too.
‘I’m not going back into the prison I created for myself ’ Susanne Warren