Making a More Peaceful World

Making a More Peaceful World

It is easy to get caught up in all that is wrong in the world, all that we are unable to control. We see people doing things all around us that make us angry, cynical, and upset. All of these feelings, toward things we have no control over, only makes the world less peaceful. We might not be able to right the world’s wrongs or stop the next war, but we can take small steps in our everyday life to bring a little peace into the world. And that little peace can grow and blossom into even larger acts of peace.

I have started down this journey by looking at the only thing I really have total control over – myself. I started to look at the things that I was doing wrong. The ways that I look outside myself and let things that I cannot control, control me. I realized that I was giving power to too many things far outside of my circle of influence. This is a term borrowed from Stephen R. Covey’s The Seven Habits of Highly Successful People. In this books he talks about our circle of concern and our circle of influence and how proactive people focus on their circle of influence.

I started to practice this in a very small way in a circumstance that used to cause me much stress – driving. I started to think about how I was reacting to other people on the road and I asked myself if my reactions to their actions made anything better. I realized it didn’t. As crazy and as excited as I would get about somebody performing some foolish act on the road it didn’t change that person or their actions and it never would. I also realized that the irrational way I reacted created many negative side effects. For one, it was creating stress in me. I was allowing others to make me act like a fool and also damage my health. Second, it was causing me to act in ways that endangered my life, the lives of those I love, and others on the road. I was allowing others to make me act in ways that not only brought danger to others, but also brought damage to my soul.

Once I realized this I began to practice new habits. All week I have been being more conscious of my actions and my reasons for doing things. Then I ask myself if what I am doing is adding a positive or negative energy into the world. I have found that I am driving safer, being more courteous, and far less stressed out. Now, no matter how bad the traffic is, now matter how rude the drivers are, I don’t focus on their actions, but on my actions.

This may not seem like much, but it is through little actions that we bring peace and goodwill into the world. And as we work on little actions it builds into bigger actions in our lives and we begin to see other ways that we can practice acts of peace. If we all took the time to practice acting within our circle of influence, instead of our circle of concern, we could make our world a happier and more peaceful place.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *