9 signs someone is truly at peace with themselves, according to psychology

We’ve all met the kind of person who seems to just exude inner peace, fulfillment and wisdom. 

In traditional myths and religions, these wise and loving individuals are often elderly sages or wise medicine women. 

But in truth these fulfilled and love-filled individuals come from every walk of life and come in all ages. 

What is their secret?

It’s not so complicated, really. It just requires discipline and getting to know and accept yourself at a deep and fundamental level. 

1) They accept themselves fully

Acceptance is a word we’re used to hearing a lot, but it’s often misunderstood. 

People who’ve found inner peace accept themselves fully, practicing what’s known as radical acceptance

This doesn’t mean they don’t strive to improve or change. It doesn’t mean they don’t care about their suffering or what they’re going through. 

It just means they accept that the present situation is what it is, and they are what they are. That true, full and unconditional acceptance is the source of enormous power for transformation and growth.

Author, coach and therapist John Amodeo, Ph.D., MFT says it very well:

“A key to our well-being is to accept ourselves as we are. This means making room for our human experience just as it is without judging ourselves.”

2) They don’t focus on blame 

Those who’ve found inner peace don’t focus on blame. 

They have stopped trying to figure out who exactly is to blame for all the problems of the world, even if it’s God or the devil or the man or woman in the mirror. 

Life goes on. 

They focus on what they’re going to do when they get up in the morning and focus on a way to be a light in somebody else’s life too, if they get the chance. 

3) They’re true to their own values

It’s not always easy to stay true to one’s own values, but those who’ve found inner peace do so. 

Nobody can buy them off, no matter how high the price. 

They’ve reached a level of certainty about what they believe and care about that can’t be compromised. 

They act on what they believe and value and that’s just that. This tends to make those with inner peace highly charismatic as well, since those with a strong mission and ability to act draw others towards them. 

“Inner peace comes from knowing your beliefs and having the willingness to act according to them. It takes mental muscle to do that,” explains licensed clinical social worker and psychotherapist Amy Morin.

4) They’re happy living life without seeking approval

Our biology and evolution makes us enjoy approval. 

Knowing we are doing a good job leads to the release of dopamine and all sorts of pleasant feelings. 

But those who’ve found abiding inner peace don’t hanker after that high anymore. 

They genuinely have accepted (and even like) the fact that they have surpassed beyond needing to feel understood or approved of by others. 

They’ll take feedback and criticism into account, sure, but it’s not going to be the final word on what they do or don’t do.

As depression specialist and therapist Dr. Gregory Jantz Ph.D. As Jantz says

“It’s natural to want to be liked by others—and it’s healthy to accept that it’s not going to happen all the time.”

5) They’re not looking for anyone to save them

Codependency is an unfortunate situation that crops up in many relationships and often breaks down into a “savior” and “victim.”

An avoidant and anxious individual get into a circle of chasing and being chased. It never ends until both of their hearts have been through the blender. And they both still feel just as empty.

Those who’ve found inner peace have faced their inner needy person. They have faced that codependent individual who feels not good enough “unless” A, B or C. 

They have done deep inner work to feel good enough as they are without needing any person, place, ideology or external situation to confirm that.

6) They don’t dodge painful emotions or engage in escape behaviors

Those who’ve found true inner peace have truly accepted that life isn’t just about pleasant experiences and emotions. 

There’s so much that happens to us from loss to work disappointment and breakups that aren’t fully in our control. 

These things cause pain and sorrow, and that’s not a bad thing. 

It’s just life. 

Those who’ve found inner peace have accepted that life is a package deal and they don’t try to run away from the pain through addictive behaviors or denial. 

They confront the pain and sit with it, acknowledging that difficult emotions are just as valid and genuine as pleasant and light-hearted emotions. 

As Amodeo puts it:

“Living our lives by clinging to pleasure and avoiding pain is not a formula for joy and well-being. The path toward awakening involves acknowledging and welcoming the full range of our human emotions.”

7) They maintain inner calm and pragmatism in the midst of outer turmoil

Those parts of life out of our control are something that sometimes can’t be prepared for. 

But those who’ve found inner peace find a way deep inside to keep their head even when the situation is chaotic or crazy. 

Their expectations are realistic and they don’t expect perfect safety or calm. 

They know that situations can spin out of control quickly, and they’re ready.

They are ready and willing to adapt to the unseen storms of life when they come, including the part I mentioned previously about accepting the difficult emotions that often accompany life’s mishaps. 

8) They have a life filled with purpose and action-oriented plans

The north star grounding people with inner peace is their purpose. 

They have done the soul searching and introspection to find out what makes them tick and what they want to commit their life to. 

This gives them an inner anchor that many around them lack. 

When times are tough or confusing, they cling to this mission like a lifeline, following through on their purpose in their personal and professional life. 

9) They have let go of old grudges and avoid engaging with energy vampires

Grudges aren’t worth holding, but it’s easier said than done to let them go. 

Those who are truly at peace with themselves have let go of past vendettas and the burning resentment they may have once felt. 

That said, they also avoid energy vampires, bullies and toxic people. 

They just don’t have time for it, and it’s not part of any evolution or lesson they have to learn, so to the best of their ability they avoid such people. 

“You encounter all kinds of people and situations that try to steal your serenity,” Jantz notes.

“Know what they are and take measures to fend them off.”

What does it mean to be ‘at peace with yourself’?

Being at peace with yourself is going to look different for every person. https://hackspirit.com/radical-acceptance/

Each reader will have a different experience and interpretation. But the core situation will be very similar:

A sense of fulfillment and stability within yourself…

A foundation from which to build outwards and expand…

A certainty that you are using your talents and energies for worthwhile endeavors and relationships that matter for you.

Being at peace with yourself doesn’t mean you don’t have crises or doubts, it just means that you love and care about yourself even when times are tough, and you are ready to keep living life the best you can. 

That’s as much as any of us can ask! 

Paul Brian

Paul R. Brian is a freelance journalist and writer who has reported from around the world, focusing on religion, culture and geopolitics. Follow him on www.twitter.com/paulrbrian and visit his website at www.paulrbrian.com

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