In my clinical work as a Counsellor I often ask people what they are looking for – what it is that they want from counselling. Some of the answers have been: ‘I want to be happy’ –
‘I want the pain to stop’- ‘I want other people to change’ – ‘I want to be like other people who seem to have everything’- ‘I want to find myself’
We then begin to reflect on just what this actually means. Whatever challenges we face we have a choice about how to go forward. Part of my role as a Counsellor is to walk alongside you showing you how to be empowered and strengthened inwardly – this will then have an impact on the way that you manage your struggles.
I found a wonderful quote which I would like to share with you, author unknown
It does not mean to be in a place where there is no noise, trouble or hard work
It means to be in the midst of those things and still be calm in your heart
The logo on my website says ‘Freedom through struggle’ rather than freedom from struggle. The truth is that we will have struggles but it is possible to find inner peace even in the midst of these.
When I talk about inner peace I mean an internal state. It is true that we can sometimes find peace from external things such as a beautiful sunset or exercise but I would suggest that these things don’t last even though they can be wonderful in the moment and for a brief time afterwards.
There are many ways to obtain inner peace. Some of these are:
- Loving ourselves – we are unique and have intrinsic worth just because we are us. This is the basis for the way we relate to other people and make sense of the world.
- Don’t compare yourself with other people. This is futile – it only ends up with us believing the lie that we will never be ‘good enough’ or that we are ‘so much better than…’
- What are we thinking about – our thoughts feed our feelings and then the choices that we make.
- What do we feed our minds on? Often we are conscious of what we feed our bodies but I wonder if we make conscious choices to feed our minds with healthy things.
- Learn to be still with ourselves. The world would have us believe that the more busy we are the better it is. Is it? Are we able to just be quiet with ourselves and enjoy our own company.Of course we need healthy relationships but if we aren’t comfortable with ourselves it will be difficult to have good relationships with other people. There is a difference between choosing to be alone to replenish ourselves and being lonely. Self-care is absolutely vital. Often we put others first which can seem as though it is a selfless act. However if we don’t take care of ourselves we will become burnt-out, stressed and resentful.