Living Peacefully in a World of Busy

Psalm 37:37, “Consider the blameless, observe the upright; a future awaits those who seek peace.”

It has been a few weeks since I have posted. So long, in fact, that friends are beginning to wonder what’s happened to this blog. This semester has been awesome but also crazy for me. Between more difficult classes, a job, and joining a social club (LU’s version of fraternities and sororities) time has been at a premium. With that being said, this post could not be coming at a better time.  Our world moves so fast. When I was a freshman in high school and had to do something to do after school, I was bummed. I saw school as taking up the entire day and did not want anyone to mess with my personal time afterwards.

Four years later I find myself being thankful for an hour or two of free time. It may not be the healthiest of lifestyles, but that’s just how things are going right now. I’d have to imagine many of you reading this have similar situations whether you are in school, work, or take care of a family (or a combination of all three). We run from one activity to the next activity and to the next and so on. The constant stream of tasks to complete can become completely overwhelming. It is vital to come back to reality every once in a while. We were not made to be constantly busy with the trivial pursuits of daily life.

How do you keep your cool during the busy times of life? Answering that question will likely take some personal introspection. To get your ideas flowing, I’ve complied a short list of suggestions and explanations of some of things I have used to find peace amidst the hustle and bustle. Check out these thoughts:

  1. Take time to enjoy the quiet

No matter how busy you are, carve out anywhere between 5 and 20 minutes to just sit and think.  I generally do this before bed or when I wake up in the mornings. It brings me an overwhelming sense of peace to be still and soak in my surroundings.

  1. Eyes off the screen

I spend way too much of my time looking at computer and phone screens. Straining your eyes to look at the newest Instagram posts is not a good way to relax yourself. Take some time to read a book or go outside and take a walk. Anything that does not involve electronics will work here. Get some exercise and some fresh air and your stress level will go down.

  1. Live in the moment

Focus on the task at hand and try not to worry about what is next. That’s easier said than done, but if you can master this skill you will be golden. Put your energy into whatever you happen to be doing at the moment. Compartmentalize each aspect of your day and/or week.  A friend recently told me, “Yesterday is gone and tomorrow does not exist yet.” Having that type of mindset will keep you from stressing about what is to come.

  1. Rest is important

You can only accomplish so much in one day, so it eventually comes time to call it quits. Rest is an integral part of being peaceful. Everyone has their magic number for hours of sleep needed. Do your best to try to reach that number as often as possible. Rather than trying to stay up late to finish work, I try to get more rest and in turn I find that I am more productive throughout the day.

  1. Make Lists

If it’s anything more than eating a sandwich or brushing my teeth, it’s on “The List.” I keep a running list of everything that I am doing each week. As I finish each task or goal, I check it off. Having a set list of goals will help you stay focused and on pace to finish all of your work and responsibilities. You will rarely (if ever) be caught off guard because you had it on the list.

  1. Read the Bible

Taking time to read scripture can be a great reminder of what really matters.  This will keep you from agonizing over the little speed bumps in life. Reading the Bible keeps me grounded and helps me reflect on how life should be lived. Like the Psalmist said at the beginning of this post, “a future awaits those who seek peace.”

Try putting a few of these ideas into practice this week. Discover the times you are most at peace and repeat what you did often. If you are already using some of these suggestions, then you are ahead of the game. Being peaceful in times of trial may not lead directly to happiness, but it’s a great place to start. Take a deep breath and soak it all in, life goes by fast.

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