post written by: Marc Chernoff

8 Things You Must Give Up to Find Peace


8 Things You Must Give Up to Find Peace

“Peace cannot be kept by force;
it can only be achieved by understanding.”
–Albert Einstein

Peace of mind transpires and thrives when you let go of the things that limit your growth and happiness.

You work for this peace every time you give up…

1.  Old regrets and excuses.

You can’t always choose what happens to you, but you can always choose how you feel about it and what you do about it.  You don’t have to be defined by the things you did or didn’t do in the past.  Don’t let yourself be controlled by regret.  Maybe there’s something you could have done differently, or maybe not.  Either way, it’s merely something that has already happened.

Be done with these old regrets; they’re just an excuse for people who have failed, and failing only happens if you learn nothing and give up.  Ninety-nine percent of all failures come from people who have a habit of making these empty excuses.

Think about it, you rarely fail for the things you do.  You fail for the things you don’t do, the business you leave unfinished, the things you make excuses about for the rest of your life.  Read Awaken the Giant Within.

2.  The burning desire to have all the answers.

Accept the feeling of not knowing exactly where you are going, and train yourself to love and appreciate this sensation of freedom.  Because it is only when you are suspended in the air, with no destination in sight, that you force your wings to open fully so you can fly.  And as you soar around you still may not know where you’re traveling to.  But that’s not what’s important.

What’s important is the opening of your wings.  You may not know where you’re going, but you know that so long as your wings are spread, the winds will carry you forward.

3.  The false hope of a pain-free life.

Pain is a part of life, and life’s pains have many shapes and sizes.

There’s the cold feet pain of moving on ‒ graduating, taking the next step, walking away from the familiar and into the unknown.  There’s the sharp growing pains of trial and error, of failing as you learn the best way forward.  There’s the immense, dizzying pain of life slapping you in the face when everything you thought you knew wasn’t true, or everything you had planned for falls through.

There are the more ambiguous aches and pains of successes, when you actually get what you had hoped for, but then realize that it’s not quite what you had envisioned.  And then, from time to time, there are the warm, tingling pains you feel when you realize that you are standing in a moment of sweet perfection, a priceless instant of achievement or happiness which you know cannot possibly last ‒ and yet will remain with you forever.

Even though so many folks forget, pain is actually a good thing.  It means you’re breathing, and trying, and interacting with the endless possibilities in this world.  Pain is for the living only; it’s worth fully accepting and dealing with while you still have a chance.  Read Radical Acceptance.

4.  Ties to insensitive people.

People are extremely difficult to change.

Throughout your lifetime people will make you mad, disrespect you and treat you bad.  Don’t consume yourself with trying to change them or win their approval.  And don’t make any space in your heart to hate them.  Simply walk away and let karma deal with the things they do, because any bit of time you spend on them will be wasted, and any bit of hate in your heart will only hurt you.

5.  Obsessing yourself with negative news.

For every prominent newscaster who howls about how bleak and unjust life is, there are thousands of other people behind the scenes working tirelessly to make a positive difference in the world.  For every disheartening crisis that is breathlessly reported, there are thousands of real, meaningful success stories that don’t get the attention they deserve, but that have an enormous positive ripple effect on humanity.

Try not to obsess over the negative news; learn from it and use your knowledge to work your way eagerly toward a brighter tomorrow.  Life does get better and better when you choose to make it so.

6.  The belief that fulfillment resides in the end result.

Fulfillment is not a matter of achieving a specific goal.  It is a matter of mindfully enjoying the process required to achieve that goal.  Fulfillment flows from focusing your life around specific and authentically held intentions – ideas and activities that genuinely speak to your purpose.  When these intentions are clear, consistent and meaningful, you have sufficient means to bring fulfillment and joy to your life, whether you ever fully achieve your intended goal or not.

In other words, the right journey is the destination.

7.  Measuring your success by material wealth.

We’re bombarded with images of stuff, with the implication that this stuff somehow elevates personal value and success.  So I encourage you to think about how much of your self-worth is connected to owning, giving, and getting STUFF.  Because truthfully, success, happiness, and peace of mind have little to do with STUFF.

So what does help create these things?

To laugh often and love genuinely.  To respect others and judge less.  To win the affection and sincere smiles of children.  To earn the regard of honest peers and endure the betrayal of fake friends.

To appreciate the beauty surrounding you wherever, whenever you are.  To find the good in people and situations.  To give what you can and leave the world a little better than you found it.  To have explored ideas and passions and sung at the top of your lungs with jubilation.  To know that at least one life has breathed easier because you have lived.

This is what makes a life successful.  This is how happiness and peace of mind are attained.  Read The Untethered Soul.

8.  The need to keep everything the same.

Things change.  People and circumstances come and go.  Life doesn’t stop for anybody.

Life moves very fast.  It rushes from calm to chaos in a matter of seconds.  It happens like this to people every day.  It’s happening to someone right now.

Sometimes the shortest split second in time changes the direction of our lives; a seemingly innocuous decision rattles our whole world like a meteorite striking Earth.  Entire lives have been swiveled and flipped upside down, for better or worse, on the strength of an unpredictable event.

Most of the time these changes come when you’re not asking for them and not expecting them, but they happen.  So are we helpless?  Are we puppets?  No.  These changes are going to come; you can’t help that.  But it’s what you do afterwards that counts.  That’s when you grow; that’s when you find out who you truly are.

So when you find yourself standing on a threshold, the crossing of which will seemingly change everything, don’t fight it.  Begin the next chapter in your life.

Photo by: Ashley Clements

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46 Comments

  • I absolutely enjoy all the great content that you guys put out! Honestly, every day I’m hoping that I receive a new email from your Marc & Angel subscription updates. It’s always such a pleasure to read before my feet hit the floor and I get my day started. Greatly appreciated.

  • Best post on the best blog ever!

  • I found your site through your MakesMeThink site a few months ago. Ever since, I’ve read several of your articles and they have given me some great points to think about. You have also helped to lift me up when life has been dragging me down. So it is a big “thank you” from me to both of you.

    Keep on inspiring people! It’s appreciated more than you know.

  • I swear, in the first 3 points, you just described me. And this post is so right about everything. Spectacular! So incredibly perceptive and inspiring.

  • I am a follower of your blog for a long time and each and every post in this blog is sensible and meaningful. I like the point “The false hope of a pain-free life.” I think many do it and must give up. Thank you so much for this wonderful post.

  • I love your posts because every time I try to understand and look for answers in my head, then a new post comes up and it answers some of the questions I’ve been wondering… Thank you :)

  • I have been following your blog for last one year and I haven’t missed a single post. I feel you are doing a great service and sometimes I feel you write only for me. It’s such a joy and I pray that you are blessed. This post is especially phenomenal and I am grateful for this!

  • Much of what you discuss here is about acceptance. Acceptance of our past. Acceptance that we don’t have all the answers. Acceptance of pain and change.

    Acceptance is what sets our feet on the right path.

    Only when we’ve come to accept life for what it is — to understand how we arrived at this junction; will we be able to take our first steps forward.

    Cheers!

  • Acceptance … and letting go. Always the path to peace.

  • I like this site very much. I liked it the first time I visited it. And I bookmarked it to my favorites to revisit when I have time. Now, I’m a dedicated follower.

    These days, where a sense of urgency burns you from inside, such inspiring and reminding advices are priceless. Marc and Angel, you are a source of hope, motivation, inspiration and love. Please, push harder, till you smash down the stumbling blocks of life.

    Thank you so much!

  • Great list!

    I’d also add, “Stop trying to be right all of the time. Do you want to be right or happy?” Sometimes, you have to walk away and agree to disagree. Arguing with someone who doesn’t see your POV is a waste of time and oxygen. Maintain your cool, and you’ll maintain your peace.

    P.S.

    I tried reading “The Untethered Soul” but couldn’t get into the book. However, I enjoyed his conversation with Oprah on her “Super Soul Sunday” program.

  • Happiness is achieved when we have balance in our life. We each have different roles to play: father, husband, worker, leader, friend, faithful, etc.

    It is when we have balance in our roles and that we feel we have fulfilled our obligations through each of our role that we become happy.

    Moreover, while keeping things simple and get closer to achieving happiness, as great people are simple

  • #4 has been the one I’ve had to accept the most recently. It’s freeing…

  • I love #4
    This is exactly what I’ve been doing for the past 10 years and it works ! Walk away from mean spirited people who bring you down . Know your value and self worth , we all deserve the best life has to offer.

  • This is so true… I’ve found out almost too late that life will not always be the way we want… and knowing this really frees me. Thanks for the reminder.

  • Thank you so much!!!
    No. 4 is perfect for me at this moment….I am trying to walk away from an insensitive person…this is such good advice for me.

  • I am always inspired by your posts, they help bring me up when I am down.

  • “Fulfillment flows from focusing your life around specific and authentically held intentions – ideas and activities that genuinely speak to your purpose.”

    There’s definitely a process to this. I’ve learned that until you start giving inauthentic things up it’s tough to pick up authenticity.

  • Thank you! Your words always lift my spirits up, I am looking forward to buying and reading your new eBook!

  • Marc and Angel… always coming to the rescue. :) Thank you.

  • This was a much needed breath of fresh air, thank you for always having such comforting words.

  • Your posts are always so inspiring. Sometimes I feel like they are speaking directly to me. Such sound advice. For me, “knowing” what do to & “knowing” what I feel emotionally seems to be the hangup. I’ve done #4 and made many eliminations, however, the reality of #3 “the immense, dizzying pain of life slapping you in the face when everything you thought you knew wasn’t true, or everything you had planned for falls through”, is so hard to deal with. Especially when the love of your life is gone. Blessings to you both, and thank you again for these reminders. :)

  • @All:
    Thanks so much. It’s always so nice to spend 15 minutes in the morning reading your inspiring comments.

    This post was actually a joint effort between Angel and I - we each wrote four of the points and then combined them and copy-edited them to fit together in one post. So it’s really nice to hear that so many of you connected with the content.

    @Trevor, Amandah, Mohammed, and Rae: Such insightful additions to the conversation. I couldn’t agree more.

    @Aya: Thank you again. I hope you enjoy our new 1,000 Little Things ebook. Angel and I are proud of it. It’s honestly a great manual and reference point for staying on the right track in the year ahead, and every year thereafter.

  • Good points. I’d definitely agree that you shouldn’t be trying to find all the answers, but I think there’s a line to be drawn between letting yourself drift in the wind to actually setting your own sail so you go where you want, you can still have the answers to the future of your own life if you choose to. Just make sure you prepare for adversity so that you can carry on your journey :)

    It seems to me like too many people just let the wind carry them without steering at all, and then will blame the wind when it all goes wrong, despite having their own sail to set which they neglect.

  • I’ve been following your posts for awhile, thank you. This one was especially logical and helpful in my life. You are an extremely articulate and intelligent thinker!

  • Thanks to to you Marc and Angel, your articles have changed the way I think about living. I read every update. Cheers.

  • Thank you so much for this terrific post.
    I cannot descripe how beautiful is it because each time you teach me how to understand the world around me in your wise eyes…

  • Thank you, thank you Marc & Angel. Your posts have helped me come to terms with the people in my family and in my life who have deceived and hurt me the deepest.

    I have found hope in your posts that I am not my past and that trusting in karma is better than seeking revenge. You convinced me that “forgiveness and letting it all go” was the best thing I could do for myself… you were right. I can now put my energy into the God given talents I have been ignoring.

    Happy & Healthy New Year to you both…

  • I’m truly happy that your book is out.

    Thanks for continuing this blog site. I tell everyone i know that there is something for everyone here. I know a lot of people that will be happy about the book too. Best wishes for the new year :)

  • I just reviewed a copy of my divorce judgement. Your 8 things to give up to find peace is helping me so much right now. Thank you so much for taking the time to help others like me.

  • Very insightful, thanks!
    I love your blog! So many great articles…

  • Very inspiring. We indeed need to give up our desires and expectations to find peace!

  • Lovely, wise post. I’d add: The need to be perfect to the list-or even believing that there is such a thing. If we can approach life with a spirit of curiosity & growth it all becomes so much easier.

  • Now is a perfect time to take control of #5. Negative news surrounds us every day and a lot of us can cling to this thinking it’s how people are or the world is going into the gutter. We need to remain positive and focus on the greater things in life. Their is much to live for and negativity isn’t one of them.

  • I love number 8 so much! I got teary-eyed while reading the words because I have felt this *change* several times. Thanks for this list! ;)

  • You have touched my life with your advice and tips. I’m devoting my blog to changing my life using your direction. Keep up the good work, and please PLEASE never stop blogging. :)

  • Thank you for your tremendous efforts. It’s so inspiring. What the things I try my best every day are number 6 and 7.

    Thank you so much.

  • I really appreciate what you are doing guys! When I read one of your blogs it helps me to manage my anger. I hope life continues to bless you and give you more wisdom.

  • Hi Marc and Angel! Thank you for inspiring me and making me realize things about life. :) I so love your blog! I hope I can become as positive as you someday. :) Thank you and Bless you always.

  • Incredible article. This is so inspiring and came at the perfect time. I love the part about negative news and intensive people. Such a good reminder that those things drain of us our own positive energy and life force. Thanks again and happy new year!

  • You guys are unbelievably good. How do you do it ? I am yet to find one post I didn’t like and I am usually very picky.

  • Finding peace is an extremely difficult journey but once you reach that destination it sure is sweet. I am slowly finding peace of my own and learning to detach myself from material items. It’s hard when you are a fashion blogger… haha. Cheers! xo.

  • Thank you.
    Well written, and just what was needed.

    Peace

  • I am a big fan of your site. I am also a follower of you on twitter. I have read almost all the posts you have here. But today I am here to thank you for one particular point in this post. The one about insensitive people (4. Ties to insensitive people). Oh! You have no idea how it helped! Thank you Marc and Angel! You guys are like blessings. Thank you!

  • Great Message!! Very positive information to help you pick up the pieces and move on, in a positive way.

  • I’m so glad I stumbled to your blog.

    Everything is on point. Especially #4 really hit me big time. I’ve been dealing with a specific insensitive person for over 10 years and can’t seem to walk away or move on. I always have a space in my heart for that person and it’s making me unhappy.

    Any tips/suggestions to help me to walk away from this person?

    Thanks.

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