Peace Takes Work

Photo Credit for both images: Emelda De Coteau

Peace takes work. That’s right. I said it. Genuine inner peace is a daily process. Beginning not by fighting against some immense injustice (although that’s important), but wrestling with how we not only embrace peace, but embody it.

Sounds complex, huh? I am convinced you and I can achieve it. Peace does not manifest as a delightful destination we come to after years of faithful lotus pose practice; it’s a concrete process, and one that starts with you. Quite simply as Iyanla Vanzant, author, speaker and star of Iyanla: Fix My Life says ” you’ve got to do the work.” Faith in God and prayer, for me, as a progressive Christian, are also vital pieces of this journey.

The genesis of our work is now. Breath and observe your emotions the next time yelling, screaming and generally behaving like a 6 year old is more appealing. Trust me, I have those days. We all do.

Years ago, brilliant poet and activist Gil Scott Heron sang, “You gotta work for peace” on his album “Spirits.” Start doing the work.

Here are two other ideas for you:
Please also share what are you currently doing to nurture peace in your life. 

Daily Moments Alone: Busy, busy, busy can leave you hurried and agitated. Choose a few minutes (or several) and sit in quiet meditation. Your mind will relax and open. Here you learn the art of observation, being aware of emotions. You’ll need this when someone cuts you off in traffic. It’s the perfect opportunity to practice observing those emotions and then releasing them.

Talk less, listen more: When we are open to others truths and experiences, we learn and grow – a quiet mouth leads to an open heart and greater understanding.

Emelda De Coteau
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