As someone with anxiety, finding peace can be challenging. It takes a lot to center myself and maintain peace. However, there are places I love to go to feel grounded when I’m stressed, upset, or overwhelmed.
Below is my list of 10 places that bring me peace, going from ten to my number one place that brings me the most peace.
10. In my Memories of Grandma & Grandpa’s House
Technically not a “place” I can go to anymore, but it’s a place I go to in my mind now. My grandparents on my dad’s side lived in a lovely retirement community called The Villages in Lady Lake, FL, ever since I was four years old. I grew up visiting my grandparents every summer and for many other holidays during the year.
Not sure if it was just because I was a kid, but grandma and grandpa’s house feels magical, like all your problems disappear and what’s left are yummy waffles, dips in the pool, and fun board games. I would be swimming in the pool with grandma, teaching her water aerobics (even though I knew nothing about it), or sitting at the dinner table teaching my younger siblings how to play Clue, all these moments, and more like these, I replay in my head.
While I can’t go to my grandparents house anymore because they passed away when I was 14, I go back to it in my mind when I need some peace. I imagine what it would be like walking into their house as a 24-year-old looking for childlike comforts. I bet you grandma would make me dinner, open a bottle of wine with me, and sip as we play card games. It makes me tear up at the thought, but also brings me so much peace. Thanks Grandma and Grandpa.
9. Assisi, Italy
Of course Assisi would bring me peace, it would bring anyone peace if they simply stepped foot into the quaint city. I instantly felt an overwhelming amount of peace the second I got off my train when I visited as a study abroad student.
Saint Francis revealed himself to me in so many ways, proving why he became my confirmation saint. Siestas, delicious food, and holy grounds are what play through my head when I remember my trip to Assisi.
This is also a place that can’t be visited (often), but I look at the souvenirs on my desk and feel transported back to sitting in the same chapels Saint Francis sat in, overlooking the mountains he looked at, and praying in the grottos where he prayed.
8. Doing Makeup In Front of My Mirror
I love doing makeup. I especially love doing creative makeup looks. While I have given you all tips in the past on some makeup hacks to help you feel more confident, I haven’t yet shared my love for creative and special effect looks.
For about 8 years, I have been doing cosplay (a form of dressing up in costumes and playing as the character) where I dress up as my favorite characters from TV shows, movies, and anime. It has been my creative outlet for a long time, and it brings me so much joy.
I feel peace in the moments I’m standing in front of my mirror and bringing my creativity to life, watching the progress I make as I add on each layer of makeup and color. I enjoy taking my time and bringing my creativity to life.
7. The Movie Theater
My family and I have been movie lovers my entire life. We love sitting down together to watch movies at home. However, there is something special about going to the movie theater that brings me peace.
Movies have a way of pulling you from reality for a brief time, as you get sucked into the world of the movie and enjoy the ride. The movie theater atmosphere enhances this feeling by surrounding us with sound in front of a large screen, sitting in darkness. I feel stillness by just being in total immersion of someone else’s storytelling.
I used to go to the movies almost every week when I was studying for my undergrad. Of course I utilized the $5 tuesday promotion AMC offered in order to keep me from going broke. But the movies have always been a place for me to escape to and find peace.
6. Aztecas Mexican Restaurant
Hear me out. This restaurant has become a second home for me. The best part of this restaurant, aside from it serving my favorite type of food, is that it’s 3 minutes away from my house. Because it’s so close (and the food is so good) my family and I would go quite often, and because of that it turned into a place of peace for me.
My favorite time to go is during the week for lunch, it’s when there’s less people and the prices are lower, yay lunch prices! But I love going to Aztecas anytime with family and friends, or just me and my boyfriend. To me, I find peace sitting in my favorite restaurant with my margarita and enchiladas.
5. My Bed
My bed has always been the only space that has been my own, since I’ve been rooming with my sister my whole life. Whenever I wanted space from the craziness of my life I’d curl up in my bed and be at peace.
I make a conscious effort to reserve my bed for rest and sleeping, and try not to work in bed. This is to help my body differentiate the space, so that it can easily relax in this relaxing-only space.
It’s embarrassing to admit, but I’ve been sleeping in the same bed for 20 years. And it wasn’t until 1 year ago that I finally got a foam mattress cover to help make it more comfy. This extra softness has changed my life, and made my bed even more cozy and relaxing.
4. Abuela’s Pool
Abuela (Grandma) hasn’t always had a pool in her backyard. She moved homes about 5 years ago, and her new home has a beautiful swimming pool that I tend to use pretty regularly, thanks to beautiful South Florida weather.
For a whole summer, I went to her pool every Wednesday to relax in my floaty with my beverage of choice. Usually it would be just me and Fernando (my boyfriend), but other members of my family would occasionally join us.
Since that summer, it has become a tradition that I buy a new pool floaty from Target to use throughout the summer and enjoy time in the pool. Being in the pool means I can’t access my phone or laptop, resulting in a truly disconnected break from virtual reality.
3. In Abuelo’s Arms
If I’m thinking about the places that bring me peace, in Abuelo’s (Grandpa’s) arms is up there. While he’s sitting on the couch, I love to just sit next to him, and he instantly puts his arm up and around me as I lay on his chest.
He starts to talk to me about how I need to just relax, how God’s going to take care of my problems, and I shouldn’t worry. His words of affirmation, as well as the deep rumble in his chest as he speaks, soothe my anxiety.
These are moments I will always cherish, hold on to, and keep returning to often as I can.
2. In Fernando’s Arms
No matter where I am, whether I’m stress shopping at the mall or frustrated at my desk, the second Fernando puts his arm around me, I’m at peace. Even in the moments when I’m angry and don’t want to be held, he knows a hug is all I need to release the tension.
Movie watching is so much better snuggled under his arm, bringing me a sense of safety and peace. All I feel is love and joy when I get pulled in for a hug, and nothing makes me feel more at peace.
1. At the Chapel During Adoration
I have written in previous blogs and shared on our Instagram how much I love Adoration of the Blessed Sacrament. The peace God bestows on me when I am in His presence is otherworldly, and I can’t even describe it.
God’s mercy, love, and peace are incomprehensible, yet He provides small glimmers of this indescribable reality during moments of adoration and prayer. I enter the chapel with all my worries, offer it all up to Him, and come out with an overflowing feeling of peace.
While not every place on my list can be visited by all of you, I encourage you to take note of your own places that bring you peace, and refer to them when you’re stressed. Whether it’s in the arms of a loved one or sitting at your favorite restaurant, invite the Lord into these spaces so He can bestow upon you His incredible love and peace.