What is tranquility, is it good for you, how do you get it, and is it even a realistic option in our current culture?
Tranquility is utter calm, the absence of agitation or anxiety. As a visual, think of a placid lake. No boats, no swimmers, no wind, nothing disturbs the water’s smooth-as-glass surface.
Tranquility is a choice. A state of mind reached by one’s intention to be calm and peaceful. Unlike the lake surface which must react to wind, boats, and swimmers, humans can choose to ignore turmoil and chaos, those scenarios which normally generate feelings of fear and anger.
These intense emotions trigger physical reactions geared to action–fight or flight.
Useful preparations if we’re physically threatened, but they also take a toll on our bodies. It’s healthier to be calm and free of stress and anger. Blood pressure and heart rate are lower, and our immune systems are stronger. The bottom line is that tranquility is healthier than turmoil.
Is tranquility realistic?
How can a person be tranquil in today’s world? It’s difficult. One of the enhancers of tranquility is solitude, time spent in relative isolation free of outside stimuli. In today’s world, with cell phones, blackberries, and iPods, we have little solitude.
It is difficult to be tranquil while watching violence and aggression on the news, in movies, or in games. It is difficult to simultaneously be tranquil and self-righteous, angry, or judgmental. It is difficult to be tranquil in the face of health problems.
Buying-in to the latest drama at home or work, taking sides, and solving other people’s problems are not scenarios conducive to a tranquil state of mind.
What can we do?
- Eat healthy to be healthy
- Exercise to be fit and strong
- Learn stress reducing tools such as yoga and meditation
- Turn off TV ( research indicates TV shows billed as entertainment actually leave us depressed)
- Intend to be calm, peaceful, and non-judgmental
- Give up the need to be right
- Be empathetic and supportive of other people’s dramas, but keep out
- Be very selective with what we watch, read, and hear.
Being tranquil in today’s fast moving culture may seem foreign and too difficult. But the rewards of peace of mind and inner calm are well worth the effort.
Please share your tranquility experiences and frustrations
Please share a favorite inspirational story or saying that helps you to be tranquil–it may help others too.
Or share the situation that you face if it seems to thwart your attempts to be tranquil. Send your stories/sayings/questions here.
I’ll respond to your submissions and further explore tranquility throughout this month.