It is not possible for any human being to experience complete happiness all the time. We can only experience happiness when things go well for us. When things go badly for us, we feel unhappy. This is normal. It is part of living in a world with other people and experiencing the ups and downs that come along with life.
But inner peace transcends happiness. Inner peace means that you are at ease with yourself no matter how good or bad your circumstances may be. You don’t get upset over things like money problems or relationship issues because you know they will pass. You have learned to accept them as part of life.
So, if you want to find true inner peace, you need to learn to let go of the things that cause you unhappiness. Here are some habits to embrace, things to avoid and some inspirational quotes for more inner peace.
Here are 10 habits I have found helpful to cultivate inner peace.
1. Be grateful.
You can’t always control what happens to you, but you can control how you react to those events. If you’re feeling down about something, take a moment to think about all the things in your life that you do enjoy. Think about all the people who care about you. Think about all the things that make you happy.
2. Don’t dwell on negative thoughts.
When you start thinking negatively, it’s easy to fall into a downward spiral of negativity. Instead, focus on positive things. Focus on the fact that you have a roof over your head, food to eat, clothes to wear, and friends to spend time with. These are all things that most people would consider basic necessities. But these things aren’t enough to give you true inner peace. They are just physical needs. In many ways, this is an extension of “be grateful”.
3. Practice mindfulness.
Mindfulness is simply paying attention to whatever you are doing right now without judgment. For example, if you are eating dinner, you might notice the taste of the food, the texture of the food, and the smell of the food. Or, if you are walking through a park, you might notice the sounds around you, the smells, and the sights.
4. Do something kind for someone else.
If you practice mindfulness, then you’ll realize that everything has value. Even though you may not agree with someone’s beliefs, you can still appreciate their kindness. And even if you don’t agree with someone’s actions, you can still appreciate the person themselves.
5. Take time out for yourself.
We live in a society where everyone feels like they have to work constantly to survive. Sometimes, this causes stress. Stress leads to anxiety which leads to depression. Depression makes it hard to function properly. So, sometimes, we need to step away from our responsibilities and relax.
6. Spend time with loved ones.
Spending time with family members and close friends helps to build strong relationships . Strong relationships help to create inner peace.
7. Find joy in simple things.
Sometimes, we forget that there are so many small pleasures in life. There are so many little things that bring us joy. Some examples include: listening to music, watching a sunset, taking a walk, going to a museum, playing sports, reading books, etc.
8. Learn to forgive others.
Forgiveness is an important aspect of inner peace. When you hold onto anger towards another person, it prevents you from being able to move forward. It also keeps you stuck in the past.
9. Accept responsibility for your mistakes.
It’s okay to admit when you’ve made a mistake. Admitting your mistakes allows you to grow and become a better person.
10. Practice witness consciousness.
Notice that you are the one who is aware of the thoughts, feelings, and sensations happening within the space of your consciousness. When you realize that you are not these things arising in your awareness, you can cultivate the power of getting some separation from them. You can then notice that every thought, emotion and sensation just comes and goes. When you don’t give them energy or attention, they tend to come and go much faster.
Also, my post – How to Find Inner Peace and Happiness – Practical Steps You Can Take Now! shows another angle on finding inner peace that is a very worthwhile read.
7 Things to Avoid if You Want Inner Peace
1. Getting into arguments you cant win.
Why give your energy and focus away to a pointless argument? Politics is one area that comes to mind. Are you really going to convince anyone to change their mind on heated political issues, or are you just going to get irritated and frustrated – and maybe even judgmental. This also applies to dealing with toxic people. Some people just want to argue. Just politely move on from those people without judgement.
The people we surround ourselves with affect the way we think, feel, and act. We are influenced by those around us. If our friends are mean, we might treat others similarly. If our colleagues are rude, we could become rude too. And if our family members are dishonest, we may end up doing similar things.
Engaging with people who lie or gossip takes a toll on our mental health. In fact, research suggests that negative interactions with people like this are linked to depression and anxiety. These feelings can lead to low self-esteem, loneliness, and even suicide.
You will never find inner peace if you try to change people like this. Instead, establish healthy emotional and physical limits. Learn to say no.
2. Being too hard on yourself.
I’ve seen many people blame themselves for every single thing that goes wrong in their lives. This type of thinking isn’t helpful. In fact, it can be downright dangerous. If you think everything is your fault, you’ll never learn how to handle difficult situations. And you won’t be able to move forward because you’ll feel stuck in the past.
Overcoming self-blame takes practice. Start small: When something happens that makes you angry, don’t immediately assume you caused it. Instead, ask yourself what role you played in creating the situation. Then make a plan to improve next time.
3. Trying to find happiness in temporary circumstances.
When we think about getting happy, we often focus on short-term pleasures like food, alcohol, sex, drugs, shopping, etc. But what happens when we chase those things too much? We end up feeling empty, dissatisfied, and unfulfilled. In fact, research suggests that chasing happiness can actually make us less satisfied over the long term.
In contrast, mentally strong people know that true happiness doesn’t come from fleeting moments of pleasure, but rather from building a life filled with meaning and purpose.
They don’t just seek out positive experiences; they actively avoid negative ones. And because they understand that happiness can’t be bought, they set realistic expectations and seek meaningful pursuits.
4. Having a victim mentality
Inner peace requires us to accept our situation, no matter how hard it seems. We must always be willing to admit we’re wrong, and we must learn to live with what we’ve done. This doesn’t mean we just sit around moping about it; rather, it means we make amends where possible and move forward.
The victim mentality prevents us from taking responsibility for our lives. It causes us to blame others for our misfortunes, and it makes us feel like victims of circumstance. People who think like this don’t realize that they’re actually making themselves into victims. If someone else is responsible for your misfortune, why do you deserve to suffer? Why shouldn’t you try to change your situation?
5. Caring what other people think and trying to impress them
You could spend your whole life trying to make other people like you. But it might not work out very well because no one likes everyone else.
Instead, try focusing on what makes you happy. If you do that, you’ll find that people start to admire you for being yourself. And once you feel good about yourself, you won’t care too much about how others respond to you.
The people around you will probably notice that you’re happier—and they’ll want to be around you even more. So rather than wasting your energy trying to make other people love you, why not use that energy to live your best life now?
6. Holding on to unforgiveness and negativity.
You may think that by refusing to forgive someone, you’re punishing them. But, in reality, it only robs you of your peace of mind and makes you miserable.
Holding onto anger and hatred only diminishes your life. People who are peaceful within realize that letting go of grudges frees up mental space for more important things. They don’t let their feelings dictate how they live their day-to-day lives. Instead, they use their emotions to fuel their actions.
7. Over-emphasizing material things
No matter how much money you earn, a bigger house, better car, or even fancier clothes won’t bring you true happiness. In fact, those things might just take away from it.
Expecting material possessions to fill your needs will leave you bitterly disappointed. You might find yourself constantly striving for more stuff, always feeling like there isn’t enough. And while you’re busy chasing after more and more stuff, you’ll miss out on what really matters.
Inner peace doesn’t mean being a minimalist. A happy person isn’t one who lives for his or her material possessions; rather, he or she is someone who has found happiness through living life to its fullest. Instead, they use their possessions to express themselves and connect with others.
10 Inner Peace Quotes
“Peace is the result of retraining your mind to process life as it is, rather than as you think it should be.” -Wayne W. Dye
“Inner peace can be reached only when we practice forgiveness. Forgiveness is letting go of the past, and is therefore the means for correcting our misperceptions.” – Gerald Jampolsky
“You find peace not by rearranging the circumstances of your life, but by realizing who you are at the deepest level.” – Eckhart Tolle
“Ego says – Once everything falls into place, I’ll feel inner peace. Spirit says – Find your inner peace and then everything will fall into place.” – Marianne Williamson
“Within you, there is a stillness and a sanctuary to which you can retreat at any time and be yourself.” -Hermann Hesse
“Do not let the behavior of others destroy your inner peace.” – Dalai Lama
“No person, no place, and no thing has any power over us, for ‘we’ are the only thinkers in our mind. When we create peace and harmony and balance in our minds, we will find it in our lives.” – Louise L. Hay
“There is a calmness to a life lived in gratitude, a quiet joy.” –
“You are the sky. Everything else is just the weather.” – Pema Chodron
“Inner peace is beyond victory or defeat.” – Bhagavad Gita
You may want to also check out my post – How can you access your innate power and find your inner peace? for more great insights on finding inner peace.
Frequently asked questions about inner peace
What about meditation for inner peace?
Meditation is such an important habit to cultivate for more inner peace. It helps you focus on the present moment and clear your thoughts. Meditation also allows you to become aware of your body and breath. This awareness helps you relax and get rid of stress.
How can I find inner peace?
There are so many things that help us find inner peace. Here are some ideas:
Take time out for yourself every day. You don’t have to do anything special or spend a lot of money. Just take a few minutes to sit quietly and think about something that makes you happy.
Try yoga. Yoga teaches you how to breathe deeply and stretch your muscles. These exercises help you feel relaxed and calm.
Take up a hobby. Hobbies like knitting, painting, reading, and playing music all give you something to enjoy in your spare time.
Get outside. Spending time in nature can be very relaxing. Go hiking, camping, fishing, or just sitting by a lake.
Do something nice for someone else. Helping others will make you happier because you’ll know that you’re making their lives better.
Make sure you eat well. Eating healthy foods will keep you feeling good inside and out.
Find a way to express your feelings. If you’re angry or sad, write down your thoughts and feelings. Then, talk with a friend or family member about them.
What does the Bible say about inner peace?
Here are a few verse references.
The Bible says that God has given us a spirit not of fear but one of power and love and self-control (2 Timothy 1:7). This means that we can have an inner peace even when things are going wrong in our lives. We don’t need to be afraid or worried about anything because God will take care of everything.
God wants us to live with joy and peace (Philippians 4:4)
We must learn how to control ourselves so that we do not become angry or upset by something that happens around us. We must also learn how to forgive others who hurt us.
God wants us to be happy (Psalm 16:11)
This verse tells us that God wants us to enjoy life and to be happy. He wants us to be joyful and contented.
God wants us not to worry (1 Thessalonians 5:6)
This verse tells us that God doesn’t want us to worry. Worrying causes stress which leads to physical problems such as headaches, stomach aches, etc. It also makes us feel bad about ourselves.
What is inner peace in Buddhism?
This is not a complete answer, but Buddhism teaches that all beings are subject to the same impermanence and suffering as ourselves. We can find inner peace by accepting this fact and not clinging to things that will inevitably change or be taken away from us. This acceptance leads to a sense of freedom and contentment. It also helps us to live more compassionately towards others.
I hope that you found these suggested habits, things to avoid, quotes and answers helpful in your search for inner peace. I would live to hear from you about what has worked for you in your journey.
If I were to prioritize the top four things to focus on for more inner peace, out of everything I mentioned above, it would be the following:
When you realize that you are not your thoughts, feelings, emotions, or even your body, it can change everything. You start to realize that there is something more within you than the human character you are playing. As you see this, as “Who am I?” over and over again.
Nisargadatta Maharaj suggested this form of self inquiry.
“I am not my mind; I am not my body; I am not my emotions; I am not my thoughts; I am not my ego. I am not my name, nor my country, nor my religion, nor my caste, nor my occupation. I am not my relatives, nor my friends, nor my enemies. I am not my possessions, nor my desires, nor my ambitions. I am not my past, nor my future. I am not my memories, nor my hopes, nor my fears. I am not my opinions, nor my likes, nor my dislikes. I am not my wishes, nor my dreams, nor my plans. I am not my habits, nor my tastes, nor my preferences. I am not my beliefs, nor my convictions, nor my prejudices. I am not my words, nor my deeds, nor my actions. I am not my body, nor my mind, nor my emotions. I am not my senses, nor my intellect, nor my ego.”
When we don’t accept what we can’t change, we are fighting with life. This is a battle we cannot win. But in acceptance, not resignation, we can find peace with what is. In the clarity of acceptance, we may also get more insight and intuition into how to improve our circumstance.
We can’t help but feel better when we focus on what we are thankful for in our lives, instead of what we wish were different. It’s easy to be grateful when things go well, but it takes practice to be grateful when they don’t.
This is an important part of being kind to yourself. We all have times where we need to forgive ourselves for mistakes we’ve made. Self-compassion helps us do so without beating ourselves up. When we make our mind and our inner world our best friend instead of our enemy, a natural peace and love arises within us. It is a beautiful continuum of love flowing into ourselves and out to the rest of the world.
You can also check out my post Integrating insights on Inner Peace and happiness from Arthur C. Brooks for more helpful tips.