Happy New Year to the peacemakers in our global, mindful, living community.
When we last connected around the New Year, we were speaking about setting powerful intentions to have peace and success in our minds, health, and lives at the start of 2017.
Ten days into the New Year, how is that coming along for you?
Last Tuesday, my business year started, and I felt like a bullet-speed train ready to derail if one more task got added to my to-do list in Asana. As I boarded a plane for San Francisco Thursday, I pondered - what does it take to hold on to inner peace once we get a glimpse?
I had a personal revelation while curled up on my meditation mat in the ashram on my vacation. I was ready to show up as my full self personally and professionally this year. This meant balancing divine feminine with the disciplined, action oriented, masculine mindset. Who do I envision Dr. Romie in her full self?
Dr. Romie = Inner Peace Activist + LadyBoss Brain Doctor
Gulp. I wanted to run back to the ashram, but I have a business to run and a personal life to attempt to balance. Not good for someone who is a self-proclaimed inner peace activist bridging medicine and mindfulness.
Discomfort is Necessary for Spiritual Growth
How can we achieve peace without escaping to the ashram and meditating for hours daily? Let's start with how I ascended to new levels of inner peace, neurologist's nirvana and a calm consciousness at the ashram.
The morning bell rang at 5:30 am to start the day with two hours of morning meditation followed by 2 hours of yoga. The afternoon included 2 more hours of yoga, dinner, and then two hours of meditation. My sits bones are still sore one week later as I sit on the airplane typing this article. I
"In order to connect to true inner peace, physical and emotional discomfort are necessary for expansion" @DrRomie #Mindfulness Tweet This
But is brain discomfort necessary to find inner peace again?
We all live in the real world. I had to leave chanting Swamiji who was watching over my morning meditation back in the ashram and return to 2017, a growing business, new employees, and a full speaking schedule.
I thought I would bring back the key elements of life at the ashram back to our daily lives as we all try to create some semblance of life-work balance.
How Do We Hold on to Peace?
There are a summary of the few steps that helped me to quiet my mind and connect to inner peace in the ashram. If all the steps seem radical or unattainable, could you pick one of them to try in your home for one week?
1. Digital Detox
At the ashram, WiFi is present but turned off during meditation hours every morning and evening. Could you schedule time first thing in the morning and the evening before bedtime to discard your digital devices? You can even turn off the WiFi in your home (warn teenagers first) and pretend like you are out of the country accruing ridiculous roaming and data charges for turning on your mobile phone.
2. Clean the clutter: Start with your closets
Do you feel stuck in moving forward in the New Year? The Feng Shui definition for clutter is “postponed decisions and the inability to move forward." Extreme clutter holds you back and keeps you from making progress. One of the basic tenets of Feng Shui is that nothing new flows into your life until you make room for it.
Clutter in your closets – reveals an unwillingness to examine your emotions. More than that, in feng shui, closets, are connected to your innermost, your deepest, and often hidden feelings about yourself.
Think of the state of your closets as a feng shui test of your self-esteem. How healthy is your self-esteem? How clean, peaceful and beautiful is your inner world? These items cluttered in your closet are holding your life back in the past, and you can’t move forward. They will make you feel tired, lethargic, and depressed. On the other hand, keeping the things you love creates positive energy and opens up new opportunities in your life.
3. Create a Morning Ritual for 10-20 minutes.
Create a morning ritual that does NOT involve your smart phone or other digital devices. What is a morning ritual? Ideally, a set of practices that involves contemplation, meditation, and intention setting. - If you are not ready for a full meditation practice yet, could you sit and try controlled breathing while you sip your morning coffee?
- Set an intention for the day or write down three items that must be completed on your to-do list.
- Other options are spiritual reading (I restarted A Course In Miracles daily lessons) or journaling.
4. Warning this is radical: cancel cable, buy books.
In the 4th Quarter of 2016, my speaking engagement calendar expanded to double the projected dates. Juggling weekly travel with a clinical practice meant I needed to be at peak performance. Unfortunately, the stress of the political election started to wear me down. I made the radical decision to cancel my cable. I don’t miss cable, even if Scandal is finally returning to TGIT.
I know canceling cable is a radical step, but could you even start with taking the television out of your bedroom? I was tired of the piles of books stacking up in my home for personal and professional development. I now have quiet reading time almost daily in the evenings replacing the stress hormone elevating evening news. 2017 is the year for writing my books. Time at the ashram unlocked creativity. All of the negativity on television was going to strangle my creative muse.
One Step in the Direction of Peace
What is one step you can take this week to connect to peace in this New Year?
Can you find 10 minutes to write down your personal prescription for peace? I would love to hear from you if you have successfully disconnected from television or have scheduled digital detox time in your home. Keep me posted below on your progress and if you have any additional questions.
Here is to your peace in the New Year,