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There's something about the phrase, "protect your peace" that has a nice ring to it.
It just sounds true.
But simply because there are several "p's" in the phrase doesn't mean that it's valuable.
The value comes, not from an alliterative phrase, but from what the phrase means to you.
So what does it actually mean to protect your peace?
And why should you care?
Today you're going to get answers to both--and then you'll figure out how to be peaceful in a way that feels right for you.
What Not Protecting Your Peace Means For Your Mental Health
I want you to think of a time when you felt utterly drained of energy.
A time when nothing you said or did seemed to make a difference.
This utter drainage of energy is the opposite of protecting your peace.
But why start with the opposite?
Why not tackle it head-on?
Because one of the best ways to understand something is to understand the lack of that thing.
Take people, for instance.
You know what a good relationship is by knowing what it is not.
It's not someone who monopolizes the conversation.
It's not someone who makes you feel bad for being who you are.
Those are indicators of toxic relationships.
But they are signposts you've learned to recognize. They signal what to avoid.
We come to understand what peace is in much the same way.
Lack of safe space to feel understood.
These form the contours of a deeply draining life.
Peace is the opposite.
It's a life of fulfillment.
It's you at your best.
When you're peaceful, you're able to think with a clear mind.
You're able to make decisions that propel you forward, helping you and those around you in the process.
Peace is positive energy incarnate.
It's you before you put all those labels and worries and judgments on yourself.
How to Protect Your Peace of Mind - 7 Factors to Consider
1. What's your nature when you're at your best? And what environment are you in?
Who are you when you're thriving?
What does "coming alive" look like in your life?
It's worth taking time to describe what feeling peaceful means to you so that you can understand the ways in which it shows up in your life.
Are you happy when you're moving around and laughing?
Or is it when you're still and silent?
Who's around you? What are they doing?
And where are you when you're most at ease?
These are all signs that you can track and data points that you can put together.
Track the signs and collect the data--because then you can recreate the peace that forms the backdrop of your finest moments.
2. What are your most common peace stealers?
If the goal is feeling peaceful, then it's critically important to know who prevents that peace.
And maybe it's not always the same person. Take a hint from the thinking you did about peaceful environments above.
Maybe a person who helps you feel energized or relaxed in one environment is a nightmare in a different environment.
It's up to you.
Make a list of the relationships that nourish you, and then go one step further: reflect on why that is and what you're doing with those people when you feel most at peace.
3. Boundaries are everything
A life without boundaries is a recipe for never having any peace at all.
Because boundaries keep you in balance.
They form the foundation that best fits your mental and emotional structure.
You wouldn't build a house on a cliff without carefully understanding what kind of foundation would support it, just like you wouldn't erect a skyscraper in a crowded city block without first studying the landscape and limitations.
If you're a sensitive person, you're likely going to need more time to relax and recharge.
If you're a person who feeds off the energy of other people, then your definition of peace will be totally different.
Healthy boundaries are the actions you take in response to your own natural limitations.
4. Who are the most peaceful people you know?
There are probably people in your life for whom you have deep admiration.
They float through their lives without concern or calamity.
Or so it seems.
Ask these people what they do to protect their peace. Maybe they've never considered it.
But chances are that the people you respect did not become that way by accident.
They either have systems they've built up over time or they learned to trust their inner nature.
Figure out what drives them by approaching them with curiosity. Then ask them where they find their peace.
5. What does stress mean to you?
This one requires reflecting on the work you've already done to figure out who you are.
What does it look and feel like when your mental health and emotional health are hurting?
What kind of person are you when you're feeling stressed?
It could be your work that drains you. Or it could be the people in your life.
Whatever it is, accept it with an open mind.
An acknowledgment is not a conviction.
You're human, and we all have our breaking points.
But the more you can become aware of what drains you, the more prepared you will be to protect your peace.
6. What is your most nourishing relationship?
Some of the most protective, peace-promoting factors in your life are the relationships that nourish you--the ones that lift you up and help you feel whole.
If you had to single out one relationship that most nourishes you, what would it be?
What is it about that one relationship that surpasses all others when it comes to the peace-inducing state it provides?
What can you learn from it that could help you improve your other relationships?
And here's something else to consider: maybe the most peace-providing relationship you have is the one you have with yourself.
7. Consider your health if you don't claim moments of peace
By now, you should be convinced of how important it is to protect your peace.
If not, here's one final plea I want you to consider.
What is this lack of peace costing you?
At what expense will you live a life without peace?
Life is short.
Time is finite.
Peace of mind is the antidote for a life without energy and without joy.
If you take the time to know who you are, and if you survey your most peaceful environments and relationships, you will start to see the landscape that etches a fulfilling, mentally healthy life of peace. Your life of peace.