As I write this, in October 2023, we live in a world that feels like it is on the brink of the apocalypse. Having just survived a  difficult pandemic when we were forced  to contend with the restriction of being under lockdown, daily loss of lives, and   health scares, we fell under the pressure  of a global recession as a result of the ongoing war in Russia and Ukraine

In 2023, things do not seem to be much  better. There is a genocide unfolding  before our eyes as we witness horrors on  social media happening in Palestine. We  are experiencing large scale natural  disasters as a result of climate change and  hundreds of species of animals are going  extinct as a result of the human penchant  for destruction.

Is it even possible to find inner peace in  the midst of such chaos? When reality is  crumbling before our eyes and we have  to contend with supporting ourselves  and our families, through the frantic pace  of our lives – that is when we need our  peace the most. Many of us have  experienced various brutal hardships  through the course of our lives.  However, this does not absolve us from  our responsibilities. There is a growing  disparity between the rich and powerful  and those who are poor and  marginalised. With inflation growing at an alarming rate, financial stress weighs  largely on a lot of our minds. 

Believe it or not, within us all, we all  actually have a reservoir of calm that we  can actually tap into when everything else  feels so overwhelming. We must build up  our reservoir of micro practices that we  can use to build our resilience and  manage our stress with ease and grace.  To find inner peace, we do not need to  run away to a silent ashram, we need to  find a way to contend with the present  moment.

Here are some ways we can cultivate inner peace during such tumultuous times.

Face the source of your anxiety

Something many of us tend to do is  ignore the source of our stress or anxiety.  This only serves to make a bigger  problem which has to be eventually  faced. However, if we are willing to be  honest with ourselves about what is  causing us stress, whether financial or  emotional – then we can take action on it.

Breathe in, breathe out

Meditation  is not simply a new age practice that has  no obvious benefits. It is an ancient and  life changing practice through which we  learn to channel our lifeforce and activate  the parasympathetic nervous system  which encourages us to rest and digest.  By harnessing the power of our breath, we can actually shift our state of mind. There are various free tutorials on  YouTube for those who are unsure on  how to get started.

Embrace discomfort

The practice  of yin yoga encourages us to find  stillness in various poses which deeply  stretch our muscles. The act of staying  still in one position itself brings on  feelings of discomfort. However, by  learning to embrace discomfort in those  moments, we can learn to embrace  discomfort in our own lives. This makes  us more resilient and able to cultivate a  sense of inner calm.

Use positive affirmations

Our  brains are very malleable and they can be  rewired with the use of positive  affirmations, especially ones that remind  us that we are safe, loved and at peace.  Meditating on, writing down or simply repeating affirmations can induce  feelings of well-being in our spirits. We  may not be able to control the chaos  around us, but we can control ourselves.


Look for answers from the great  beyond

When times feel uncertain, we  can turn to esoteric practices such as  tarot and astrology that meet us at the  intersection of fate and free will. By  learning to align better with ourselves  and the energies around us, we can make  more empowered choices that can help  us ease some of the burden and find  answers. We can understand where we  have agency beyond our self limiting  patterns and this can illuminate a way  forward.

Reframe your narrative

If we  constantly focus our energy on the  negative and what is not working for us,  we will attract more of what is not  working for us. However, if we reframe  the narrative, we will understand that any  obstacles in our way, were in fact signs  from the universe. Often, the universe  destroys all that is inauthentic to create a  new reality that is more aligned with our  current purpose. 

Take aligned action

It is not enough  to just reflect on what is making us feel  stressed out or anxious. If it has to be  faced, there probably is an action that is  required from our end. Unfortunately,  how we often deal with stress is  procrastinating and not taking action on  the looming task. By dealing with it head  on, we can feel much lighter.

Cultivate gratitude 

Gratitude is a  high vibration emotion and fills us with  feelings of contentment, peace and  wellbeing. Learning to cultivate gratitude  everyday for the simplest of things –  from the roof over our heads, to having  enough money to pay for our bills or  being able to enjoy good health – can  remind us of how bountiful our lives  truly are.

Help others heal to heal yourself –  When we are kind to others, we naturally  feel much better. And this does not mean  making ourselves a martyr or being  self-sacrificing, but it means having the  courage to be truly kind in a world that is  often harsh and cruel. We do not have to  allow others to dim our light, or to kill  our softness. Our propensity to love  makes us human.

Prioritise self care

Getting enough  sleep, water, nutrition, enough time for  rest and pleasure are essential in  cultivating inner peace through difficult  times. It is not selfish to take care of  ourselves. We must remember that we do  not have endless reservoirs of love,  patience and calm – through the act of  sustained self care though – we can find  it. 

Forgive yourself and others

We all  make mistakes such as poor choices and  questionable actions. That does not mean  we are doomed to repeat the same  patterns forever. It is essential for us to  learn to forgive ourselves so we can move  on, find solutions and break the pattern. 

Practise acceptance

In order to  access our inner peace, we must learn to  contend with the fact that there are many  things beyond our control. If we resist  our circumstances, we extend our  suffering. But if we learn to flow and  adapt to situations, we can find inner  peace even in the most trying of times.  

This can be a challenging process,  especially if our bodies are used to being  in its fight or flight mode. Attempting  these practices does not mean we will  achieve inner peace in a day. We will not  solve all of the problems of the world,  and we probably may not even solve all of  our own, but we will find that just by  grounding and coming back to the  present moment, our worries will ease and  peace will not feel like such a faraway goal,  but something that lives within us all.