Peace in the Chaos

Yesterday was a busy day. It was the first day of the work week. My wife took our youngest on a college visit (gulp!), and I played in my recreational basketball league last night. 

One benefit of being a busy day is that you tend to ignore the chaos around you. 

Then you flip in the news, and the chaos slaps you in the face, reminding you that all is not well. 

When that slap occurs, how do you react?

Do you try to tune out the troubling news? Do you try to avoid it with distractions? Do you let it undermine your peace and let it ruin your day? 

Honestly, I have done all these things, and as I approach the back nine of life, I am looking for new strategies for handling the chaos. 

In his book, The Peace Index, Jeremie Kubicek paints an interesting word picture:

“Imagine sitting at your favorite coffee shop and watching people stroll in with a number over their head—like a character in a video game. The number hovers in a circle with either green, yellow, or red numbers depending on the person’s sense of Peace. Some people had a green 85% over their head, some a powerfully positive green 92%, while others have a warning yellow number of 62.5% or worse; a guy walks in with a red‐hot colored 40%. 

Imagine the numbers figuratively represent how each person is doing at that moment of the day. 

In reality, you don’t see a number over people’s heads, but you know it’s there. You can probably guess the number of each member of your family without much effort. People, including you and me, have numbers telling us how at Peace we are or aren’t, and those numbers change every day.”

Can I ask you a simple question? 

With all that is happening in your life and the world right now, what is the number above your head? Where are you if complete peace is 100% and total distress is 0%?

Through listening to podcasts, reading books (like The Peace Index), and studying history, I am starting to believe two things:

  • If we are waiting for everything to BE RIGHT to experience peace, it will never happen.
  • I can engage in practices that help me live peacefully during the chaos. Practices like silence, meditation, reading, prayer, journaling, and exercise. 

So when chaos breaks out, I must increase the peace-producing activities to be a leader worth following. 

Because as Jeremie also writes, “people don’t just recognize your Peace Index, they are often affected by it.”

One More Thing

Jeremie is a keynote speaker at Leadercast: Human Intelligence. Jeremie will highlight the peace index and how self-awareness is a competitive advantage for individuals and teams–a valuable lesson for all leaders. 


Brian Rutherford

Brian Rutherford is Director of Content and Product Strategy for Leadercast. Brian has been telling stories professionally for twenty-five years. Stories that inspire people to see themselves and the world differently. Stories that challenge people to take meaningful action in the world.

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