Is it possible to maintain composure and tranquility when everything around you is chaotic? Equanimity is the opposite of what most of us experience each day. Itâs the ability to remain calm and composed at all times.
Add peace and composure to your life:
- All emotions begin with a thought. This is in contrast to what many people believe. Itâs common to believe that something bad happens first, and then we feel bad. But we can remember past experiences and feel bad. We can look forward to the future and feel excited.
- Recognize that your thoughts create your emotional states.
- Maintain an awareness of your thoughts. Keep track of what youâre thinking. Youâre not your thoughts. Youâre the thing that notices what youâre thinking. When you begin to have negative thoughts, itâs important to recognize that fact. Avoid allowing your emotions to build. Simply notice that youâre thinking negatively.
- Examine your thoughts without being judgmental. This is noticing your thoughts, but on a deeper level. Develop a curiosity about your thoughts and thinking patterns. Ask yourself why youâre having this thought. Be amused by the ways in which your mind works.
- Focus on your breathing. Thereâs nothing mystical about the breath. But it has several characteristics that are helpful:
- Your breath is always with you.
- Breathing is one of the few bodily functions that you can control.
- The way you breathe impacts your physiology.
- Breathing is current and real. You can focus on it. Your mind in the present moment and dealing with reality.
- Focusing on your breath will prevent your mind from running wild. It will calm your emotions and your body.
- Let go. Itâs that simple. You donât have to allow yourself to become upset. Just take a deep breath, let it out, and let go of the negative feelings and energy inside of you. Relax.
- Practice. If the sight of your ex sends you into a rage, imagine seeing them without this rage. Run through the process in the comfort and privacy of your home. The more you practice, the easier it will be to take back control of your emotions.
- Strong emotions are very distracting. Itâs not reasonable to believe you can control yourself in the most challenging situations, but practice will help you maintain equanimity most of the time.
- Focus on solutions. Getting upset doesnât create the best mental state for finding solutions. And equanimity doesnât mean being happy and satisfied with leaving dog poop on the carpet. Deal with the situation appropriately, but avoid experiencing the emotions that impede your ability to function optimally. Working on a solution is much more effective that worrying.
- Meditate daily. If youâre following these steps, youâre already meditating. Focus on your breath, notice your thoughts, and bring your attention back to your breath. Let go of any negative emotions. Most meditative practices follow this general format.
- Be mindful. Keep your thoughts centered on your current activity or your environment. If youâre having a conversation, stay focused on the other person. With 100% mindfulness, equanimity is all but guaranteed.
- When youâre feeling calm and centered, attempt to maintain it. Notice how good you feel. Thatâs the feeling you want to maintain. When you start to drift away from that state, attempt to bring yourself back.
Maintaining a state of equanimity is very challenging. Youâll find that your success will come most easily in mildly irritating situations, like waiting in line. As your skill grows, you can conquer situations that are more challenging. If youâre actively living your life, total equanimity is an incredible challenge. But even a little will greatly benefit your life.