How to Achieve Inner Peace in a Busy World

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Does it feel like you are constantly running around in circles, unable to catch your breath? The fast-paced nature of the modern world can challenge your well-being. It can make you feel frustrated, distracted, depressed, and disrupt your spiritual calm.

What is inner peace? Achieving this state is all about balancing your physical, mental, and emotional levels. If you are wondering how to find inner peace in your everyday life, here are 27 simple tips to enjoy life and find your inner calm.

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1. Get Enough Sleep

Your body needs sleep to function most effectively. Sleep not only allows the physical body a chance to recover, but it also lets the mind recover from the everyday stressors you deal with.

Although you may have been taught from an early age that eight hours is the correct amount of sleep each night, this isn’t always true. The amount of sleep needed varies from person to person.

It is crucial to find out how much sleep you need. It may be more than those eight hours.

Ensure that your room is dark and free of distractions to get the best sleep. Cooler temperatures make it easy to sleep faster and stay asleep better than warmer temperatures. 

It can take some trial and error to find your perfect sleep situation. But when you get a good night’s sleep, your mental health improves, and you will be ready to take on the world.

2. Drink Some Water

An estimated 75% of Americans are chronically dehydrated. How much water you need to drink will vary based on your age, gender, activity level, and other health factors. The average person needs around half a gallon per day.

Even mild dehydration can cause health issues like fatigue, headache, irritability, and confusion. These symptoms make it difficult to focus on work or relax when you’re not working. 

Taking a moment to drink a glass of water when you’re feeling stressed helps re-balance your mood. Drinking water throughout the day gives you an excellent reason to take a short break.

If you are not a fan of plain water, try infused water.

Fruits, herbs, and even vegetables infused into water create a refreshing change from plain water. Cucumber or mint water is cooling on a hot day. Lemon or ginger water gives you a zap of energy. 

3. Avoid Screen Time Before Bed

It can be tempting to watch some TV or spend time on a smartphone before bed. It feels like this should be relaxing because you aren’t doing anything active.

But screen time before bed keeps the brain engaged so that it cannot easily wind down. For instance, watching the news can cause your mind to focus on stressful events in the world. Taking time away from the day’s events helps reduce stress before bed.

In addition, the light from a TV or a smartphone confuses your body into thinking that it is still daytime. This can cause issues with sleep-assisting hormones, like melatonin not triggering in the body. Even just turning off your TV or putting down your phone half an hour before bed means that your body can recognize that it is time to get ready to sleep.

4. Exercise Regularly

Exercise is vital for keeping your physical body healthy, but did you know it also improves mental health?

Certain stress hormones, like cortisol and adrenaline, are reduced when you exercise. In addition, exercise increases endorphins, which are chemicals in the body that can improve your mood. 

Unfortunately, most people don’t get enough exercise. However, it’s easier to fit exercise into your daily life than you realize.

Something as simple as taking short walks around the block, a few laps in the pool, or some gentle stretching can provide this benefit. It is crucial to find a form of exercise that you enjoy and can do without causing significant discomfort. 

It is essential to exercise regularly, but it does not have to be every day. You should aim for a mix of endurance, flexibility, strength, and balance exercises during your week. Mixing up your exercise routine helps keep you motivated and provides health benefits to your whole body.

5. Practice Meditation

When you think of finding inner peace, meditation immediately comes to mind. There’s a good reason for that. Mindfulness meditation has been used for centuries to calm the mind and rejuvenate the spirit.

Today, resources to help with meditation are more accessible than ever. There are dozens of meditation apps that provide guided meditation which is great for beginners. Most workout subscriptions—like Peloton and Apple Fitness+—offer instructor-led meditation sessions as well. You can also find online videos, in-person teachers, and meditation podcasts.

You don’t need anything other than a few minutes of your time to start practicing meditation. Use it to take a break whenever life stresses start to build, in addition to having a set time during the day for regular practice. Simply get your body comfortable, relax, and let your mind be clear of distractions.

6. Declutter Your Surroundings

If your life feels like chaos, take a look at your surroundings. A cluttered home or work location adds stress to your body. Simple tasks like finding your keys or that bill you know you need to pay become more stressful if finding the items you need takes extra time.

Looking around at clutter puts stress on the body on a mental level. Even if you don’t say it out loud, you will be thinking about how you probably should file those papers or clean off that table. You may even feel guilt about leaving things undone.

If you don’t have time to declutter your house thoroughly, there are a few key places to start. Your bedroom is a place that should promote rest, so declutter that right away. Work can be a source of stress, so help minimize stress by having a decluttered workspace. 

Another easy to avoid clutter is to take a few moments every day to put things away. That way you avoid having mountains of clutter built up over time.

7. Embrace a To-Do List Lifestyle

Do you always have the feeling that you’re forgetting something? If you find yourself feeling like you are always behind, a simple to-do list can help.

Every night before you go to bed, jot down a list of tasks to accomplish the next day. In a central part of your house, have a list that you and others in your household can add tasks that need to be completed soon, but not immediately.

By creating to-do lists, you can see right away what tasks require your attention. This makes it easy to prioritize what needs to be done or to identify tasks that can be completed with minimal effort. Every item you take off your to-do list means one less thing to worry about.

Checking off items on a to-do list can also give an emotional boost. You get a sense of accomplishment when you cross off an item. Even on a day when nothing seems to go right, items removed from your to-do list affirm that you did accomplish something that day.

8. Talk Out Your Feelings

As the saying goes, a burden shared is a burden halved. Try talking through an issue on your mind with a friend or family member. If you don’t have anyone to talk to at that time, talk through it out loud.

Your mind can get stuck in a loop when you have thoughts that need to get out. Just speaking them out loud gives you the ability to let them go, along with any stress attached to them.

If you are talking through a concern with a friend or family member, let them know whether you are looking for advice or just need to vent. In some cases, just the act of talking can bring you more peace. In others, you can get their views of a situation. They may have a perspective that you hadn’t considered.

9. Eat a Healthy Diet

Besides physical health, a nutritious diet improves mental health and reduces stress levels. Additives like salt and caffeine can increase blood pressure. These can put a strain on your body which impacts your overall well-being. 

Chocolate itself isn’t considered a healthy food. However, studies have shown that small amounts of dark chocolate are an incredible mood booster.

Other foods like fresh fruit and vegetables improve your mood when consumed over time. This is because fresh fruits and vegetables contain micronutrients needed by your body. When your body has what it requires to function at its best, it is less stressed and more at peace.

10. Listen to Music or Other Pleasing Sounds

For a quick way to bring calm to your life, pop on some music. Soothing sounds like classical and new age music bring a relaxed mood to any environment.

But you don’t have to just listen to calming music to improve your mood. Try playing some upbeat pop songs from the 80s or a peppy jazz number. Music that you have a positive emotional connection to can bring back the feelings of happier times.

Soundscapes and other ambient sounds also work to relax your body. Think of how relaxed you feel when listening to ocean waves or gently falling rain. Try different sounds to see what works best for you. 

Are you looking to take work with sounds to another level? Try using Tibetan singing bowls, drums, tuning forks, bells, or chimes to improve your mood.

11. Pick Up a Hobby

If you feel stuck in a rut, the best thing to do is try something new. When selecting a hobby, try to pick something different from what you do for your job. For instance, if you work on a computer all day, start a hobby that takes you away from your desk chair.

Some hobbies can provide physical or mental benefits as well. For example, counting stitches for knitting or crocheting can be meditative. Riding a bike or fishing gets you into the fresh air and sunshine.

It may take many tries to find a hobby that is just right for you. Don’t be discouraged if the first hobby you try doesn’t work out. There is a hobby out there for anyone!

12. Practice Self Care

It is easy to be over-committed with work and life responsibilities. Take steps to schedule a time just for you. 

To make sure that you take your “you time,” put it on your calendar. Let friends and family members know that you are taking time for yourself to practice some self care. Set your phone to do not disturb mode. 

What should you do with your you time? Find something that you are doing just for yourself. Whether it is a spa treatment or massage, going out for ice cream, or just sitting down with a good book, only you can decide what works best for you.

13. Let Go What You Can’t Control

In life, there are some things that you just can’t control. For those issues, the best advice is to let them go.

This can include everything from other people’s actions to the weather that day. If you find that you are getting upset about something, take a deep breath, say out loud that you will just let this go, and then put it out of your mind.

Letting go of things you can’t control gives you more time and energy to focus on what you can control. Remember, you can’t change the cards you are dealt in life, but you can choose which ones you will play. 

14. Take Time to Breathe for Inner Peace

Because you need to breathe to live, you probably don’t think much about it. But being aware of your breathing can help center you when you feel disconnected and take in the present moment..

For a good breathing technique, sit with your feet planted firmly on the ground. Straighten your spine, and breathe in deeply through your nose. Hold your breath for a count of five, and then exhale slowly through your mouth.

Repeat conscious breathing for a set of five breaths or about a minute. You will feel refreshed, focused, and alone with your own thoughts.

15. Spend Time in Fresh Air and Sunshine

There’s nothing like a breath of fresh air to clear the room—or yourself—from negative feelings. If you need to find your focus, go for a short walk outside. 

With our heavily office-based and indoor lives, many do not get the amounts of Vitamin D we need. Vitamin D is also called the sunshine vitamin because it is produced by the body when exposed to sunlight. 

Symptoms of vitamin D deficiency are a lot like those of clinical depression. Lack of vitamin D can cause mood swings, sadness, fatigue, and feelings of hopelessness. While vitamin D supplements are popular, especially in the winter months when people stay inside more, nothing beats sunshine itself.

Getting out in the fresh air and sunshine also means removing yourself temporarily from whatever situation impacted your inner peace. In addition, a short break with a bit of sun and fresh air can reduce stress so you can focus on any issue at hand.

16. Forgive Yourself and Others

Imagine every time you make a mistake that you pick up a 5-pound weight. In time, the weight of all the mistakes you carry around would make it impossible to move.

Everyone makes mistakes. To find inner peace, you need to forgive yourself, release the guilt, and let go of past mistakes. Sometimes it is as simple as saying out loud, “I forgive me, and I am moving on.” 

Taking the time to practice acceptance and self compassion goes a long way towards achieving psychological or spiritual calm. Not only that, but it makes you a more resilient person in the long run.

The same is true when interacting with other people. People in your life will make mistakes. Sometimes those mistakes can be hurtful.

If you can find peace with the person who has wronged you, then make sure to let go of any grudges that you could be tempted to carry. If you cannot make peace with the person, put it out of your mind so that you are not carrying around the burden of feeling wronged by that person.

17. Embrace Gratitude Daily

Not everything in life will go the way you want it to. Bad things happen even to good people. Instead of dwelling on the negative, express gratitude for the positive in your life.

Making gratitude a part of your daily routine can improve your mental well-being. If something good happens that you are grateful for, share it with friends and family. Keep a journal of positive experiences for yourself on your journey to finding peace.

The simple acknowledgment of the good in your life can change your mindset. Start every day by listing three things that you are grateful for in your life. Making gratitude a daily habit helps you see the good in your life and helps you avoid focusing on the negative.

18. Wash Away Your Cares

It may seem cliche, but a long soak in the tub is a great stress reliever. If you don’t have time for that long, luxurious bath, even a quick shower can improve your mental state.

Visualize your care washing from your body and down the drain. You can also use soaps that have aromatherapy properties. To energize you, try scents like orange or peppermint. For relaxation, use lavender or rose.

Whether you take an hour-long bubble bath or a five-minute shower, the healing properties of flowing water can restore a sense of inner peace.

19. Take a Break from News and Social Media

Today’s social media and 24-hour news cycle world are overwhelming. There’s always something new coming up that demands your attention right now. It’s difficult to remain calm and have positive thoughts when you’re constantly consuming chaos.

It is easy to become obsessed with checking your phone to see what’s happening at any given moment. Effective social media uses every trick possible to try and keep your emotions engaged—no matter how damaging that may be to someone’s mental health. Whether a post makes you happy, sad, or angry, the only goal is to keep your emotions in overdrive.

This may be good for social media, news, and advertising, but it can take a toll on your peace and happiness. When feeling overwhelmed, take a break from checking your social media accounts. Stay away from the news for a while. Let your mind process what it has at present, and then, if desired, you can go back to see what is going on in the world.

20. Surround Yourself with Healthy People

Have you ever met that one person who can bring a whole room down? Or maybe you’ve seen that one person who brings a smile to everyone’s face. Who would you rather spend time with of these two types of people?

Happiness is contagious. If you surround yourself with people who have a positive outlook on life, that outlook can rub off on you. On the other hand, people who have a negative view of life can bring you down with them. 

This isn’t to say that you have to cut someone out of your life when they have a terrible day. But if you find that you have someone in your life that disrupts your inner peace, it may be time to take a break from them so you can focus on your own happiness.

21. Take Responsibility For Your Actions

The awareness that you are going to accept the consequences of your actions makes you act a certain way.

When you know you have nobody to blame but yourself, your choices and actions are well planned and thought out.

Taking responsibility enables you to attain discipline, and people around you will come to respect your choices.

Remember, you chose your own behavior, its only right that you take responsibility.

22. Embrace Who You Are

Everyone has faults and little things they don’t like about themselves. Accept you for who you are.

Inner peace and happiness comes with being comfortable with yourself. Embracing yourself, the good and the bad, gives you the first opportunity of acceptance. From yourself.

Only then can you look inside you and recognize things that make you happy.

23. Be Honest With Yourself

See yourself for who you are and the energy you put out. Whatever you reflect out to the world should be the same as your thoughts of yourself.

You can’t think of yourself as a philanthropist when the world only sees a scrooge.

Create congruency between who you are and what you put out. This prevents conflict that may arise based on your character. The congruency makes it clear on what your ideals are.

24. Focus on the Positive

The law of attraction states that we attract what we are. Focusing on the positive is bound to draw positive things your way.

Research shows that people with a lot of positive thoughts are less likely to be affected by depression.

And it makes sense.

When you look at every obstacle or situation as an opportunity instead of a problem, your entire outlook on life changes. It’s known as positive psychology.

Try to go into new experiences with a positive state of mind and good intentions. When you exude positivity and good vibes, it’s extremely difficult for outside forces to penetrate your inner peace.

25. Derive Joy in Everything

Life is beautiful and there are so many things to enjoy. Learn how to derive joy in everything you do, and you’ll be in a constant state of peace.

That also means taking the time to get out of your comfort zone a bit.

While you should always make time for things that you love and make you happy, don’t be afraid to get out of your space and experience the world. Staying in one place for too long may get boring and redundant.

Be able to open yourself to the joys life provides. Sometimes we forget what it felt like to be happy and carefree. Let out your inner child and have fun.

Being an adult doesn’t mean you should lose your sprinkle of fairy dust.

26. Speak Your Mind

Never be afraid to open up and say exactly what you mean.

Most of us can’t read minds. So why not invest in some words and make things clear?

Clearing things up will relieve the frustration and stress you may have. Talking and letting people know what you think and your feelings lifts a burden off your shoulders. You can never be accused of deceit when you say exactly what you mean.

Ultimately even if people don’t like what you have to say, they’ll respect you for being honest.

How many times do you find yourself thinking of arguments you might have given? Speaking your mind leaves no room for you to doubt yourself and what you said. It gives you a more peaceful mind to focus on other things. And that’s inner peace.

27. Focus On The Now

The past may haunt you and the future may distress you. It’s up to you to make yourself focus on the now.

Focus on living in the present.

Paying attention to the present allows you to focus on the current state of your thoughts. You are able to follow the progress of your thoughts as you go about your day. It creates an awareness of how you think and your pattern of progress.

People who live in the moment tend to experience less stress and are known to be happier and more secure. Being grounded in the present leaves no room to doubt your actions and worry about their consequences. It ensures you remain in a secure bubble of self-assurance.

More Ways to Achieve Inner Peace and Happiness

The road to inner peace can be bumpy. Every person’s journey will be different. What works for one person may not work for you.

Inner peace relies on building a healthy sense of self on all levels: physical, mental, and emotional. At different times, each aspect of yourself may need more focus. You can start by recognizing which parts of you need the most attention—begin your work there, focusing on one aspect as at a time.

Are you looking for even more ideas to help you find inner peace and deal with difficult emotions? Then check out our site for more tips on self improvement and taking care of your mental health.

Additional Resources

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About the author

I'm an avid reader and love anything to do with mindfulness and mental health!

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