Choosing Peace


You can choose peace in every moment of your life. We have been taught to believe that when we don’t get what we want, or things aren’t unfolding as we had thought they should, that’s bad and thus we should feel badly. This struggling against what is, this inability or unwillingness to love what is, is the source of all of our suffering and it is entirely our own creation. With practice, we can become as masterful at choosing peace as we have become at choosing anything else.


The Practice:

Catch – Own – Replace

First, CATCH your moods. Heighten your awareness to your mental states. Begin to pay close attention to the various moods that you experience throughout the course of every day. Notice them all, and label them. Notice when you are feeling blissful, anxious, relaxed, angry, excited, impatient. And label them as such.

Next, OWN those moods. Take full ownership of each and every one of them. Recognize these moods as your own creations. Acknowledge to yourself that you are fully responsible for having created that mood as a result of your choice on how to interpret whatever event is occurring at the time. And if the mood is unpleasant, acknowledge to yourself that you have the power to change that.

And finally, REPLACE (or upgrade) the unpleasant moods by changing the way you are thinking about whatever may be occurring in the moment.


I am not feeling this way because of what is happening. I am feeling this way because of how I am choosing to think about what’s happening.

Ain’t bad; Just is.

I can choose peace rather than this.

Many years ago I took a trip to Cabo that turned into an unexpected journey of rapid, deep personal transformation.

This post is one of sixteen excerpts of a piece of writing that I did, that was inspired by this magical experience.

Each “chapter” contains a lesson that can be categorized as a lesson in Mental Toughness, personal development, or spiritual growth.

These chapters have been organized into three segments: the Lesson theory, a Practice, and relevant Mantras to help you in your own journey.


  1. Dave Young says:

    “We have been taught…” is such an important idea to remember. Having been taught to feel bad — likely since childhood — also means that it is the state that is the most familiar to us. Familiarity often masquerades as safety. To break out of those habits whose only virtue is familiarity will likely evoke a little fear and disorientation; the natural human response to the unfamiliar. Thanks Chris for all of your work toward a new conversation that will result in the elimination those destructive lessons in the first place.

    • The Mental Toughness Coach says:

      I appreciate you, Dave. And as our late friend, Alan Watts, said, “We are playing the ultimate game of hide and seek. We hide ourselves so we can find ourselves.”

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