There is a fully legit reason for starting a spiritual practice.
It makes you feel better.
I personally didn’t bother with a spiritual practice until my late twenties. Now I make sure I am regularly reading spiritual texts, practicing yoga and self-awareness – and yeah, even meditating, especially when I am feeling particularly discombobulated. In fact, my whole day is pretty much spent in and out of spiritual type disciplines.
So why the hell do I do that?
These exercises help me to feel centered, calm, happy, peaceful, present and undistracted when everything is going to pot around me.
And if that doesn’t convince you: just take a look around you. It’s getting harder and harder to sustain sanity in life. Having a daily spiritual practice is our antidote to that.
So how might a spiritual practice look? There are loads of ways:
- Daily intention-setting. For example, setting the intention in the morning that the day be full of grace and ease.
- Walking in nature.
- Practicing gratitude.
- Practicing acceptance and letting go.
- Being mindful.
- Witnessing/observing yourself having negative thoughts.
- Focusing on breathing.
- Spending time in solitude being ‘bored’.
- Spending time sharing your struggles and concerns with your community of peeps. Listening to theirs. Helping eachother to grow.
- Choosing love in everything you do.
- Practicing non-judgment.
- Practice self-reflection and self-inquiry through journalling/writing.
- Becoming aware of the routines you are in and how you’re thinking of them.
- Making time for things that ignite and inspire you.
- Reading an inspiring or motivational book.
- Doing visualization.
- Doing yoga.
- Seeking the energy meaning of situations (i.e. looking ‘beyond’ the surface).
- Reminding yourself that all physical and emotional obstacles are illusions.
Basically, anything where you bring purpose and awareness can be a spiritual practice.
Here is a special practice you can do that’ll really elevate the health of your mind and body.
Spotlight spiritual practice: Daily chakra affirming
This is on the advanced side for a spiritual practice. I’m including it because although advanced, it is fairly straightforward to do and I think it’s an awesome self-awareness practice.
Imagine 7 wheels of energy spinning in your body along its center line, from the base of your spine to the top of your head. As I have written about previously, these subtle energy channels each correspond to different areas of the body, as well as specific life situations.
Check out this infographic to learn each chakra’s position, purpose, and how to tell if it’s blocked or a little off balance.
In this practice, you evaluate your daily choices and the consequences of those for your energy system. The idea is to improve your awareness of how your emotions and thoughts are affecting your energy levels.
Note that you will not literally feel low energy in the specific location: it is about establishing what might be making you feel tired and apathetic, and noticing where you are giving away your energy and power.
You draw your attention consciously into each of your chakras, beginning with the first and working your way up. As you focus your attention:
- Ask yourself whether you have a fear relevant to this energy center drawing power from this part of your body. Attempt to consciously disconnect from that fear.
- Do the following chakra-specific blessings/affirmations. Don’t laugh. The fact is, we’re always telling ourselves something. We might as well become intentional about it.
Root chakra affirmations
I feel deeply rooted.
I am connected to my body.
I feel safe and secure.
I have the right to be here.
I have what I need.
I nourish my body with healthy food, water, exercise, relaxation, and connection to nature.
I trust in the goodness of life.
I make choices that are healthy and good for me.
I trust myself.
Pelvic chakra affirmations
I love, accept and value my body.
Creativity flows through me.
I express my sexuality freely.
I release all blame and guilt.
I am radiant, beautiful and strong and enjoy a healthy and passionate life.
I am able to feel all the positive emotions.
I am able to feel all the negative emotions, and I accept them as they teach me lessons of growth and truth.
I have healthy boundaries.
I know how to take care of my needs.
I allow myself to experience pleasure.
My sexuality is sacred.
Stomach/solar plexus chakra affirmations
I honor myself and my standards.
I am empowered and successful in my ventures.
I am able to see all the people in my life in a good light.
I love and accept myself.
I am strong and courageous.
I am worthy of love, kindness, and respect.
I am proud of my achievements.
I choose healthy relationships.
I direct my own life.
I am free to choose in any situation.
I seek opportunities for personal and spiritual growth.
Heart chakra affirmations
I love myself and I am compassionate towards others.
I receive love effortlessly and unconditionally.
I am worth loving.
I release from my life anyone that does not bring me joy.
I choose to be surrounded by positive, loving and successful people.
I deeply and completely love and accept myself.
I am open to love.
I nurture my inner child.
I am wanted and loved.
I live in balance; in a state of grace and gratefulness.
I forgive myself.
I am connected with other human beings.
I am grateful for the challenges that help me transform and open up to love.
I am open to love and kindness.
Throat chakra affirmations
My thoughts are positive, and I always express myself truthfully and clearly.
I’m aware of the power my words emanate, and I choose to always speak my truth.
I am open, clear, and honest, in my communication.
I have a right to speak my truth.
I communicate my feelings with ease.
I have a strong will that let’s me resolve my challenges.
I express myself through creativity, writing, or art.
I live an authentic life.
I have integrity.
I can share my experiences and wisdom.
I listen to my body and feelings to know what my truth is.
Forehead/third eye chakra affirmations
I trust my intuition.
I always seek to understand the true meaning of life situations.
I am in touch with my inner guidance.
I listen to my deepest wisdom.
I forgive the past and learn what was there for me to learn.
I am open to inspiration and ideas.
I am the source of my truth.
Crown chakra affirmations
I am complete and one with divine energy.
I feel the strong spiritual connection to my higher self.
I seek to understand, and learn from my life experiences.
I am connected and listen to the wisdom of the universe.
I live in the present moment.
My life moves with grace.
Summary – start small; do what feels authentic
Don’t start a spiritual practice just to add another thing to the list of things to do (and punish yourself when you don’t do).
Select one or two practices that feel authentic for you and commit to doing those daily for a month and see what changes you notice.
The idea here really is feeling good and feeling like ‘you’.
Any spiritual practice should help to foster those things.