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Episode 58: Peace Is a Practice (with Morgan Harper Nichols)
With everything going on in our homes and our world, peace can seem out of grasp even on the best days. But as artist and poet Morgan Harper Nichols says, “You don’t have to arrive at your picture-perfect life before you can know peace.” Whenever Morgan speaks, we listen—you can see why, right? This week, Emily and Morgan talk about how to quiet your heart and find contentment, no matter where you are (even if it’s somewhere you don’t want to be). Morgan shares how receiving an autism diagnosis at 31 years old helped her understand and engage with the world—and herself!—in a deeper way. Above all, Morgan reminds us that peace isn’t the absence of discomfort; it doesn’t happen passively or something you get perfectly right. Peace is something you do, a practice you come back to over and over again.
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“A river is something that you have to slow down, listen for, and go seek out in the wild. And we often feel this pressure of having to find and protect our peace, it's this perfect little ball we can keep in our bubble. But actually, peace is something that we have to practice going out into the wild and seeking out to find on a regular basis.” – Morgan Harper Nichols
“Peace is something that has to happen in the collective. It's something that we have to work on together. It's not an individual thing that's like, okay, you work on your peace, I work on my peace.” – Morgan Harper Nichols
“It's so important to know that at any given moment we are a part of a community of other people who are on the same journey. And we can support one another in that.” – Morgan Harper Nichols
A Blessing for Your Week
I hope you remember that peace is available to you right now, even if your life isn’t perfect.
I hope you remember that peace is something you’ll meet in a different place every single day, because every single day is different.
And I hope you remember that peace isn’t the absence of discomfort. It’s a powerful knowing in your soul that says, “No matter what happens, you are a woman of integrity with her feet firmly planted on the ground – and you have a community of loved ones holding you up through it all.”
Simplicity Tip of the Week
One of the easiest ways to access peace is through your breath. If you’re looking to find calm, try something called “Four-Seven-Eight” breathing. You breathe in while counting to four, you hold in your breath for seven counts, then you slowly exhale for eight counts. It’s a simple but powerful way to tell your body and your mind to slow down for a bit.
Four-Seven-Eight breathing is pretty effective after you complete one breathing cycle, but try to do that four times and see how you feel after. Also, this is a pretty kid-friendly practice as well, so try it with your kid the next time they’re feeling a bit overwhelmed and see it brings both of you a bit more calm.
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