Focus on what really matters
We are a pushy species. We make a huge ding in the planet. In a cosmic blink, we have dominated our living and physical world. Capable of brilliance and altruism, yet also prone to numbing stupidity and destruction.
Every one of us wants more peace, more love, and more joy. Evolution designed us to seek these three markers of a good life. We do everything we can to move towards them. Increasing our experience of peace, love, and joy is the purpose of every religion, philosophy, and science. You want it. I want it.
The purpose of leadership is to move people towards more peace, more love, and more joy. When we lose our way, suffering is the result.
Life delivers disruptions which tempt suffering. When facing threats, peace shatters into fear, love erupts into anger, and joy sinks into sadness. No one wants fear, anger, and sadness. Each one feels terrible in its own specific way. Pain drives us to recover the experience of peace, love, and joy.
When we lose our way, fear becomes anxiety. Anger becomes hostility. Sadness becomes depression. We have thrown therapy, medication, placebo, and a tsunami of consumption at the problem. Mental illness continues to thrive.
Here is a different approach that needs vigorous engagement.
Peace is a state of calm and an experience of safety. The vagus nerve is active. We feel secure. Peace is the foundation of wellbeing. Whilst leadership – parents, business, or state – has a role in creating safe environments, discovering peace is an individual responsibility.
When we surrender peace to fear, external protection is no longer effective. We must find our way back to peace.
We can do this with muscle relaxation, slow diaphragmatic breathing, a soft gaze, or mental reassurance. Practice creates strength. The experience of success is deeply rewarding. We can learn to cultivate peace in the most threatening situation.
Can you generate this sense of deep peace on demand? When you can, fear loses power over us. We can move forward and act with skill.
How to increase Peace
- Exhale and relax your face and body
- Slow your breathing and feel your heart rate slow
- Relax your eyes and take a wide view of nature
- Radiate a feeling of calm, peace, safety, and steadiness
- Accept that everything is perfect exactly as it is
- Know your vagus nerve is active and heart is coherent
- Bring your attention into the beauty of the present moment
- Savour the feeling of peacefulness
Love is a state of positive connection. We seek to be a force for good. Love is the foundation of collaboration and group success. Love is energising, focusing, and meaningful. In love we can trust, play, and succeed together.
When we surrender love to anger, our biology becomes inflamed. We are impelled to blame, hate and destruction. We destroy ourselves, those we love, and the world we live in.
Love is active and demanding. We must respect others, be open to their point of view, and remain caring even when others hurt us. We can learn to open our hearts, care, and act with generosity.
Can you embrace the wave of love? When you can, anger loses power over us. We can move forward together.
How to increase Love
- Build upon your practice of generating peace
- Lengthen your spine, open shoulders and hands
- Build respect, gentleness and kindness toward yourself
- Appreciate everything in your awareness right now
- Radiate a feeling of love towards all you know
- Expand an open heart to all life, nature and the cosmos
- Intend peace, joy and love to all beings
- Savour the feeling of loving kindness
Joy is state of exuberance. It is energising, happy and motivating. When we radiate joy, our biology is in its optimal state. Others are drawn to us. Joy directs us to the purpose of our lives and lubricates the flow state.
When we surrender to sadness, energy collapses, we withdraw and isolate ourselves. We cannot step forward in life. Depression is the ultimate denial of life.
Joy too must be cultivated. We can open our bodies, smile, and celebrate the small things. We must look for goodness in the face of darkness. This takes deliberate effort over time.
Can you radiate profound joy on demand? When sadness loses power over us, we can move forward – back into connection, work, and life.
How to increase Joy
- Build upon your feeling of peace and love
- Let a smile crinkle in the outer corners of your eyes
- Allow every cell and organ in your body to smile
- Focus all your attention on the most awesome reality
- Know that this moment is absolutely perfect
- Radiate a pulse of appreciation and gladness into the world
- Show your happiness to those around you
- Savour the feeling of joy, bliss and contentment
Peace, Love and Joy.