If the expression of calmness comes through communication, then one of the ways to grow in this middah must involve developing communication. This is the realm of tefillah (prayer). Whether it is from a siddur or hitbodedut (secluded spontaneous prayer) our tefillah helps us to grow in all the elements necessary for true calmness. Tefillah heightens our awareness of the world and its shortcomings. Tefillah reminds us of our own lowly state and woes. At the same time, tefillah reminds us that we are not in charge, though we are responsible. We are reminded of God’s goodness and patience with humanity. Tefillah gives us an opportunity to scream, cry, laugh, give up, and even more. In tefillah, we pour ourselves out before God and end up on the other side with a new awareness of things. With prayer anchoring our daily lives, we can clear the junk that blocks pure perception of what is going on around us. When we have pure perception we can act with calmness.
As we grow to communicate with God more honestly and openly, a change develops in us that enables us to communicate more effectively with others. Let your tefillah be a training ground where you develop your calmness. Let it be a place where you can admit you’re feeling out of control and lay it before the King who has it all under control! May our calm communication spring forth from our communication with our Maker.