What does Serenity mean? This word has gained a lot of attention these days. It seems like we are looking for it everywhere. But the irony is that the act of looking for it, in itself, causes us anxiety. Sounds familiar, right. Well, all of us have been through it and still go through it on a lot of days. I would say that before looking for something, we must first know what exactly we are looking for (i.e. its meaning). Let us look into it.
Every word has a lot of meanings in different languages and when considered from different aspects. But in this article, we shall limit ourselves to a particular meaning of the word “serenity”.
Serenity as a Noun
Serenity is derived from the Latin serenus, meaning “calm or peaceful” plus the English suffix -city, meaning “quality or state of”. It implies the absence of agitation or a stressed, anxious mind. Serenity helps us in changing our perspective in how we view our lives and the challenges it has to offer.
A few antonyms of serenity are turmoil, unrest, anxiety.
Although this explains it quite clearly, let us also see its usage in a few sentences for better understanding.
- “If you find serenity and happiness, people may be jealous.”
- “I admired her serenity in the midst of so much chaos”.
Why is it so important?
Most of our problems nowadays are because we tend to always carry baggage on our heads all the time, without even realizing it. So, does that imply that we have too much to do in our daily lives? No, not really. It is simply because we end up wasting a lot of our time being in a state of unrest and hence reducing our efficiency. We end up spending extra time on a particular task than what is required.
Being in a state of serenity increases an individual’s productivity in every walk of life. People can follow their routines properly and with the same passion with which they originally started their task/relationship. A person with a happy and calm state of mind can focus on their relationships, career, family, etc., more efficiently.
Few Signs Of A Mind At Unrest
- Feeling Empty and Lost
- Striving for Perfection
- High-Stress Levels
- Unwanted Thoughts
If something is so important in our life, we must do something to try to achieve it. It might look like a formidable task, but trust me it is simple. We just need to be a little more mindful of our activities in our day-to-day life. Every small step counts! Try inculcating some of these habits in your life and see the difference.
Some Tips To Achieve This Arduous Looking Task – Herein we will discuss some of the easiest yet really effective ways to attain serenity and root its benefits to living our lives to their full potential.
- Being Minimalistic – We do not need a lot of things in our lives that are occupying a lot of space on our desks, cupboards, and even our brains. Keeping a clean and minimal desk or wardrobe or anything for that matter helps us to focus on that task and keeps our mind fresh, instead of being bogged down by the unnecessary stuff in front of our eyes. So just try and remove all the extra stuff.
- Live In The Present – Now this is a thing for most of us for sure. We tend to keep thinking about the things of our past. How we reacted on a certain day a few years back, or this morning, what if we did not do it that way or what if we said something better, etc. Along with this, we also have a habit of living in the future. Like what we will do on that date coming Tuesday, or What we could wear on that meeting 10 days ahead of us, and so on. In doing all this, we completely lose our sense of the present which is the thing we have complete control over. By simply focusing on the task we have to do in the present and not worrying about the unnecessary things of the past or future, can help us a great deal.
- Have an Expression (creative or otherwise) – Having a creative expression like dancing, painting, or anything else helps in releasing the tensions of that moment and being able to process the emotions we are feeling at that particular time. This can prevent us from making impulsive decisions. Or one can also try and inculcate some habits like reading, meditation, exercise, going for a run, gardening, etc.
- Connect with the spiritual side – Try to stay in touch with your religious side if you believe in God. Have a prayer or any mantra which works for you, in which you believe. And if you do not believe in God, most of us still believe in something, like, there exists a power that guides the universe or some theory about how the universe was created (for the science lovers). All such people can have their respective mantras derived from the ideologies they believe in. Repeating that mantra in times of unrest helps in calming the nerves.
- Practice acceptance – Accepting what we have, does not mean being complacent in our lives. It just means having the ability to acknowledge every good thing that happens to us. And at the same time, realizing what we don’t have and why we do not have it. If we need that thing, we must work hard in the direction of achieving that thing, instead of sitting and just thinking about it. But one should never forget to be grateful for what one has.
- Have routines – Following proper routines can be difficult at times. But it is always worth the effort. It helps in reducing the anxiety related to all the what-ifs of our lives. We have been taught the importance of routines and discipline right from the beginning of our basic education.
- Have days off – We have forgotten the power of regular breaks. Constantly working on something just leads to anxiety and a lot of restlessness. On the other hand, working for short intervals but with regular breaks keeps us serene and helps us work. We should also try to keep a few days off (if possible) wherein we do not stress too much about the unnecessary things, try to keep the electronics at a distance, and engage in the activities we like to do (as mentioned in point 3). Try to drift away from the unsettling thoughts.
- Importance of Time – We were taught this in our school, that one must value time. Having proper to-do lists, setting targets for ourselves, making short-term and long-term goals can help us a lot in relieving our stress and reducing most of the anxiety we carry in our lives. Cut down on unnecessary time wastage.
- Mindful eating – Even the things we eat and drink can have a great effect on our minds. For some people, caffeine or alcohol can lead to anxiety. The same goes for food items as well. We must choose our food wisely and try to include healthy things in it. Monitoring our diet, what we eat and the effects it has on us can be very rewarding.
- Overthinking – Well, apparently the biggest demon of our lives. An overthinking brain can never be in a state of serenity. We need to stop living in our heads and thinking about the things which can happen and live in the reality of the present. If we have doubts regarding something, we can also go and directly ask the person something instead of making guesses about it. Anyways, they are bound to be wrong most of the time, So why waste our time and health on it.
- “Eat The Frog” – As Mark Twain once said “If it’s your job to eat a frog, it’s best to do it first thing in the morning. And if it’s your job to eat two frogs, it’s best to eat the biggest one first.” Here, ‘frog’ refers to the thing on our to-do list for which we have no motivation at all. Do not procrastinate. Remember, putting it off for later will not help in any way. We will have to do that task eventually, someday, or sometime. So why not just do it right away and get done with it. Procrastinating just leads to unnecessary stress.
- Sleep – Getting the minimum amount of sleep helps a great deal in relaxing our minds. We wake up with a fresh mind which has the potential to take up challenges instead of waking up to an irritated mind, which still carries the baggage of the day which went by.
- Get rid of guilt – Rebecca Solnit said once in an interview with Emma Watson “I couldn’t possibly do everything I am asked to do and if I did half of it I would never write another book.” This clearly states the point. We should try to get rid of the excess baggage of guilt and people who care for us will always understand it, sooner or later.
- Communicating effectively – This is a very important trait. Being able to communicate openly and honestly helps in reducing all the anxiety which we keep holding and also helps the people around us. This helps in avoiding any kind of confusion that can occur because of misunderstandings.
- Be open to Everything – Allow yourself to try new things. Be open to new possibilities and do not be afraid of failures. Sometimes we are just too scared to try new things and at other times we think we already know a lot. But both of these are not true. Try it and you will know what I am talking about.
I hope these tips help in getting relief from the chaos of your lives, the war inside of your head and help in achieving a sense of calm and peace. Remember the world is always as we look at it and most of the things are just in our head. It is not worth dwelling on our thoughts so much.
We can see that achieving serenity is easy if we are consistent with these tips/ some of these tips. We just need to be mindful of our actions. Practicing even a few of these tips will feel like a complete overhaul of our lives. We will always have difficulties, challenges, and complexities in our lives and it is only we who can solve them. No one else can do that for us. So to do that the first step is being in a calm state of mind which will have the potential to look at the problems the way they are and not exaggerate them in our heads.
Frequently Asked Questions
- Will these tips work?
These tips are generally tried by many and have worked for all. I practice these in my daily life. But achieving serenity requires time and effort.
- How long will it take for these tips to start showing their effects?
The best part is that these tips have an instant effect. As soon as you practice them you will feel peaceful. But, to achieve the state of serenity, it must become a part of our daily lives just like we need regular meals, exercising daily, etc.
- What are the reasons for the lack of serenity?
The reasons can be many and different for different people. Life is generally hectic and crazy and, in this race, we often forget to keep time for ourselves leading to anxiousness. And because of this, we start failing in fulfilling our roles and responsibilities and this further leads to more anxiety. This then becomes a complete circle, one thing feeding the other.