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Where do you find your peace?

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Tea Room Conversation, Roots and Wings Yoga and Healing Arts

In 2006 Annette became a Certified Svaroopa® Yoga Teacher (CSYT) and she is currently enrolled in Advanced Svaroopa® yoga teacher training.

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Tea Room Conversation with Annette Bongiorno, CSYT

Before you can figure out where you find your peace you first have to figure out what peace means to you. Here is what the thesaurus gives as other words for peace: calm, quiet, stillness, tranquility, silence, harmony, and serenity. For me peace means a quiet mind. When my mind is quiet I find stillness, tranquility and serenity even during times of crisis. Take a moment and find some words that describe peace for you.

Now that you have an idea as to what you are looking for, where do you find it? Think of where you attempt to find peace now. Is it at the bottom of a Ben & Jerry's ice cream container? Are your attempts to find peace successful? Are they long lasting?

Where I have found my peace has changed over the years. When I was younger I didn’t recognize that I craved a place where I could be peaceful, calm, quiet and dare I say blissful. I would often sit under a tree in the middle of a huge field surrounded by woods. No one would know I was there. I often did not know why I was there, but it was comforting.

As I moved into adulthood, my need for peace changed . I realized I needed to offset the stresses in my life. I found my peace while skiing, running and various fast exercise modalities. I essentially worked myself to exhaustion and then I would feel the stillness I was craving. This helped to bring me into a more peaceful state but the effects were fleeting. I wanted to feel less stressed all the time, not just when I was exercising.

I started to understand that I needed to be able to find peace within myself at anytime, not just when I was on the top of a mountain. I wanted to find peace from the inside. This need led me to yoga. I chose Svaroopa® yoga. My yoga practices, which include asana (poses), pranayama (breathing), meditation and vichara (a self guided inquiry process), all work together to quiet my mind. These practices trained my mind how to find peace and to become accustomed with living from that place of stillness, tranquility and harmony. In addition, yoga showed me that peace comes from the inside out. Peace is within me, not something I need to get from the external world. Sure, standing on the top of a mountain can make me feel peaceful . Connecting with nature to find stillness was effective for me because it invoked something that was already deep inside of me. Everyone has places, environments, sounds, colors that invoke that peace that exists within.

Where you find your peace has ramifications just like all the decisions you make and actions you take in your life. Are your choices effective or long lasting? Where you find your peace, is tailored specifically to you, so only you can define it and find it! It is definitely worth searching for and getting familiar with how peace feels to you as an individual.

The Fall Season is a good time of year to reassess where you are and to establish new routines. Think about what peace means to you and where you find it. Seek support to get you there, whether it is a class, walking with friends, getting a massage, or meditating while sitting on your sofa. Remember peace comes from the inside. Cultivate your ability to feel peace within, while using resources on the outside to help you find your way. And in the mean time, don't forget to breathe! Its a sure way to find the path to peace.  

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