How to Become Calm?
How is it possible to become more calm? Often, we try various things to help us here: meditation, holidays, designing our rooms, putting up inspiring quotes… All these things are excellent and worth focusing on. But it is hard to make calm stick. We might do 15 minutes of meditation in the morning, but a couple of hours (or reading one email) later we are already frazzled by work. The underlying challenge though is: how can we bring the calm that we feel in one moment through us for the rest of the day?
There are two big requirements for becoming more lastingly calm: knowing ourselves and knowing the world. The more we know about the world—how fixedly disappointing, disorganized and random it is—the more we know what to expect; the happier we are with a small victory in the face of constant chaos, and the more we feel calm. Self-knowledge is similar to knowledge of the world: the more familiar we are with the landscape and its weather and climate inside us, the calmer we are in the face of storms originating from inside us. Good therapy is based around gaining self-knowledge: a lasting basis for calm.
Image: Sunset Over Water, 1890s, William B. Post
Jack is a depth therapist and the founder of Archive. He has a doctorate in theology from Oxford University and a degree in neuroscience from Melbourne University. He is the co-author of The Imagination Machine (Harvard Business Press, 2022)