Do you have people in your life that annoy you? Maybe they have a personality tick, or a habit, or a way of speaking that annoys you.
Or maybe it isn’t a person. Maybe it’s just a pet peeve that anybody can do and it sets your teeth on edge.
For me, it is humming. I can’t stand it if I’m at, for example, the grocery store and someone is humming while they are shopping. I know it seems ridiculous. What harm is there in people humming? The harm is I want to grab them and say, “Stop it!”
But these people humming aren’t doing it with the purpose to get a rise out of me. Neither is the person that annoys you with their personality tick. These people, the Pet Peeve People, are just going about their lives.
Is it really fair that they become the object of our wrath? Of course not!
A receptionist once told me that people were constantly pissing her off by being rude or inconsiderate or any of the other myriad of things people put her through. It wasn’t fun to live day in and day out being angry. So, she made a practice of stepping back when someone had just been rude and saying to herself, “Thank you, Universe, for giving me this learning opportunity.”
So, I have come to view the Pet Peeve People as a gift. They are the Richter scales of my inner peace.
It was an “Aha!” moment. One day I noticed that something that slightly annoyed me the prior week made me want to punch them in the face that day. What was different? The only thing different was me.
The previous week I had practiced yoga three days and was meditating regularly. But that week my life had been chaos and I hadn’t had a chance to do yoga, none the less meditate. When I don’t practice yoga and meditate, my coping skills suffer. Hence, my inner peace is not there.
I wrote a blog about how being centered and grounded will keep you from exploding. (Click here to read that blog.) When you are centered and grounded, you are able choose your reactions to whatever life throws at you. You are able to keep the storms of the outside world from seeping inside you, disrupting your inner peace.
But, what if the opposite is true? What if a storm is raging inside you and it is leaking out and causing havoc?
Let’s say you are having a fight with your sibling. It is very distressing to you to be in this disagreement with your sibling. Your head is spinning with what you should have said in your last conversation that would have been the perfect rebuttal. Or you are thinking about what you are going to say next time you talk. And next thing you know, there is this person next to you humming. You are already in an agitated mood and this stupid humming throws you over the edge. You give this person a dirty look and a growl and stomp away, leaving this person completely confused by your behavior.
The fight with your sibling has caused you to not be present in the here and now. Instead, the agitation seeped out and you vomited that agitation on an unsuspecting stranger who was happily humming and going about their day.
This is why it is so important to take care of ourselves. When our inner peace falters, we are only making life harder on ourselves and the people around us.
Good news is, there are other ways to find inner peace besides yoga and meditation. I mean, what if the yoga pants trend is your pet peeve? Yoga would definitely be the wrong practice.
Moving your body, yoga or not, is a great way to find inner peace. Simply walking outside calms the mind and body. Nature has a way of calming down the spirit.
Traditional working out at a gym is good for inner peace as well. I’ve met many people that say they work out to relieve depression. They say they can tell when they haven’t been working out regularly by their mental state.
Pets are another great means of finding inner peace. Not only are our pets cute, petting them releases happy hormones in our bodies.
Hobbies also provide comfort for the soul. Maybe getting cozy on the couch with a cup of tea and a good book is all it takes to sooth your soul. Paddle boarding was where I found my inner peace all summer long.
And then there is having a good chat with a trusted friend. Nothing like a venting session to release the storm within and get some perspective on your life.
So next time you find yourself getting agitated with someone for no real reason, use it a red flag that your inner peace is waning. Make some time to take care of yourself. You deserve it. (And everyone else around you will benefit from it.)
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