Spirituality, for many people, is a simple yet sacred act of connecting with something greater than oneself. It's a deep sense of belonging to life and finding it meaningful on every level. It's coming into the right relationship with ourselves so that our inside matches our outside... our values and dreams show up in how we actually live our life. And when we're in the right relationship, we feel a sense of joy, peace, meaning, and being comfortable in our own skin. It feels like a type of homecoming (ever been away for a while and returned home, wow)... a kind of belonging. You get it, I know you do. So how do you put your spirituality into practice.
Here are three quick relationship qualities embodied in a spiritual life that you can practice and directly apply to your life, daily and make a difference to your overall health and wellness.
- Practice forgiveness. We have all learned what forgiveness is, but do you actually practice it. When we hold on to grudges, we eat the seeds of bitterness and resentment, but these are toxic emotions that can actually depress the immune system, eventually taking a toll on your health. But, letting go doesn't mean letting the offender off the hook, it's actually an act of liberation and it's to release you from the burden of judgment. So forgive; visit, call or even write a letter to the person who you have been holding off forgiving.
- Be grateful. If you have trouble in this area, then sit down and record in a journal three things you are grateful for... health, friendships, family, pet, etc. Then, at the end of that month, spend some time in mindful contemplation "counting your blessings" aloud, and reflecting on each one.
- Speak out your appreciation. Live your appreciation for others out loud. Sincere appreciation is a powerful motivator. A simple act of appreciating someone for a job they've done, for their commitment, or for simply being who they are, adds a boost of energy is like a gift that keeps on giving. And remember, for those you love, always try to express as much or even more sincere appreciation as you do criticism... your partner, your children or anyone else who shares your home, including your pets.
Keep in mind that spirituality is important to your health. And many studies show that people who even engage in regular spiritual practice, such as going to church or meditating, tend to have habits that promote longer, healthier lives. So, spirituality is a very important part of our lives and should be put on your daily 'to do list'. I have found that people are more vocal about their spirituality these days. I'm sure it's because they're liberated, but everywhere I go, there's a conversation about spirituality, it's like a spiritual renaissance... work, home, play... so go out and live spiritually.