Until I was 18 I was an extremely negative person. I would even take it one step further and say that until I was 18 I was a miserable person. I used to hate everyone and everything. I’m ashamed to admit that I used to wake up with the intention to make those around me miserable too, or at least know of my miseries. It wasn’t until reading Peace Is Every Step that I learned I didn’t have to be negative. I learned that my normal pessimistic energy levels were only doing harm to myself and those around me. So, I can say without that doubt that Peace Is Every Step influenced me heavily during my young adult years.
By reading this book, I learned the benefits of achieving inner peace, something I used to think was a joke. I learned that meditation can help ease the stress and tension of the day. Now, I’m not going to lie and tell you that I have no stress, no anxiety, and no tension because if you were to look up mental breakdown in the dictionary, my name would be in the definition. By nature, I have extremely high anxiety and extremely high stress.
However, the difference between me then versus now is that I was channeling these negative thoughts out into the open and projecting my feelings onto others. With the help of the Dalai Lama and Thich Nhat Hahn, I can use mindfulness and meditation to productively and positively release my anxiety.
I’m no monk. In fact, I’m not a Buddhist. I just enjoy meditation. Reading this book, particularly at such an influential age, greatly influenced me. I can wholeheartedly that this book not only influenced me but helped make me who I am now. Who knows, if I didn’t read this book I might still be that annoying grumpy person no one wants to be around. While I prefer the company of my cats, I’m so glad I’m not that person anymore.