5 Ways to a More Spiritual You
When it comes to the many aspects of health, spiritual health is often overlooked or compartmentalized. This year I’m making some major changes in my life. I’ve neglected my own health for far too long in favor of home projects, school projects and outside priorities. If this sounds like you…please read on.
There are a few daily rituals that I adhere to that I feel are important to my spiritual health and physical well-being. The following are a few methods I use to stay grounded. I’ll be making bigger changes this year to clear my life of unnecessary burdens and expectations that have been placed upon our household.
5 Ways to a More Spiritual You
I am not very demonstrative when it comes to prayer. I whisper prayers of protection every time our kids pull out of the driveway. Prayers for strength and focus are a daily occurrence. I ask for prayers for protection while we sleep. And while I don’t speak of it often, I am a very spiritual person. I never grew up associated with a church so it wasn’t a natural part of my life. But having a spiritual connection is a very big part of my life now.
Studies have shown that regularly repeating spiritual phrases can reduce stress and induce relaxation. Holistic and spiritual healing can come from praying for others or yourself. Taking a short amount of time to acknowledge what you are thankful for can be useful for your overall well-being.
An instant pick-me-up that I enjoy is meditation. I pop in my earphones and listen to guided relaxation meditations for 15-30 minutes. I strongly recommend trying out meditations from Kelly Howell. I do this in lieu of a nap. You will know you successfully meditated if you feel as though you woke up from a solid night’s sleep. You will feel rested and energized.
Meditation is scientifically proven to have both physical and spiritual benefits. It can improve your stress levels, immune system, relaxation, and cardiovascular function. Reflection can also create inspiration, heighten creativity, and help find your inner guidance. Meditation can be performed while lying down, sitting, or walking. Most meditative techniques involve conscious breathing and focusing on the present moment. According to the tantric texts, there are over 100 chakras in the human body. Chakras are wheels of energy through which cosmic energy travels throughout the body. There are seven main chakras in the body that yogis focus on through meditation work for an improved spiritual, mental, and physical state.
3. Get Outside
Being near water, gardening or bike riding are my favorite ways to stay in touch with the outdoors. I love to travel, too. This coming year I vow to get outside more. Mark recently surprised me with a road trip to Amish country where we stayed in a cabin in the woods with no internet. It was amazing.
Spending time surrounded by nature allows us to interact with the energies of earth, water, fire, and air. This can be done by walking through the park, spending time at the beach, or hiking through the woods. Taking the time to experience nature regularly can help you better respect and appreciate the ways of life. It restores balance in our lives and can provide a deeper inner spiritual connection.
4. Your Home
The environment you live in has a lot to do with your spiritual well-being. Much of my home decor is inspired by nature. All of my paint colors were inspired by the outdoors.
Your home decor and design should reflect your personality while maintaining a healthy amount of cleanliness, space, light, and warmth. Live plants breathe life and air into your living space as well and should be incorporated naturally into your interior design. These things will allow your house to be a place of relaxation and revitalization for your body and your soul.
5. Have Gratitude + Let Go
Gratitude helps to create feelings of positivity, self-acceptance, and joy. Being grateful for what you already have in life enables you to let go of bad attitudes and negativity.
Many of you may not know that I am estranged from my own family (the remaining family elders have a habit of ostracizing people – and this time it happens to be me). It has taken me some time to realize this distance is a blessing. While I once attempted to stand up for myself, it played a role in the estrangement. Most of my life I was made to feel I had always committed horrible acts and that I deserved this treatment. I have been name-called and isolated from the time I was a little girl. I have been sporadically excluded from family events from the time I was in my 20’s. During the holidays my kids are asked to attend holiday events where I am not invited with little contact the rest of the year. If we have holiday plans that conflict, then I am then accused of keeping the kids from family – but never to my face. This family dynamic has hardened me at times – but I am working on becoming the best mother (and stepmom) I know how to be based on the examples given to me. I surround myself with good people now. And I am becoming more and more comfortable with my own family becoming a distant memory.
My blog has offered me a journey towards healing and a sanctuary where I’m filled with gratitude. I can surround myself with positive readers – like you! A sense of spirituality can be achieved when you release painful emotions. Keeping a gratitude journal or simply blogging about positive things that make you happy can keep you spiritually grounded. I took a big step recently. I thanked my mother (from whom I am estranged) for helping a family member with challenges he faced. It was so freeing to feel real sense of gratitude instead of just saying the right words. Thanking a person who doesn’t love me wholly and unconditionally would normally be hard. While in that moment I still felt her disdain and judgement, but knowing that I did the right thing and having it come from real place of gratitude felt wonderful. The bonus is it is allowing me to move on, regardless of how she feels about me.
Some final thoughts…
Mark and I love our home and all the pretty things that we’ve built together, but we’ve come to realize the life we are living largely accommodates other people. We’ve ignored our needs as a couple (and a second marriage) in favor of keeping the peace. We’ve realized that our lifestyle is taking a toll on both of us. Expect to see big changes this year from both of us in the coming year.
More reading material and sources:
I wish you well on your path to increased inner peace. You are not alone in dealing with a dysfunctional family “fork in the road”. Agonizing over the right thing to do can totally consume you, so congratulations on focusing on being the best you can be.
You are blessed with a talent of artistic creativity that you allowed to flourish. Without being overly dramatic, to fill your home you were able to look at each project or piece of furniture as a chance to make it “whole” again. You are much more forgiving and accepting to the fact that something (someone) has flaws, but should not be overlooked because of them.
Thanks for sharing and best of luck on balancing your life.
Judy, thank you! Lately I’ve come to accept this is just how life is meant to be. Being remarried is where much of this judgement is coming from. Watching my stepdaughters being treated as if they don’t exist makes me realize it isn’t me that’s broken. I feel sorry for those that couldn’t bother to get to know them. It takes soft heart to love someone else’s kids – and it proved to me that my family isn’t wired like most people. There are a lot of really great people in the world to love and I’m lucky to be married to one with a great family.
Thank you for sharing! I often tell people that I am a spiritual person, but not “very religious” and reactions are not accepting. I am working on making my home a more peaceful place for myself and those who visit, this is good reminder for my journey.
I have been in that same boat. Attending a church is a matter of principle for some. I have a church that I enjoy attending, but with volleyball season we have been gone for months at a time all weekend at tournaments. But my absence at church isn’t a reflection of my faith, or lack thereof.
Thanks for the meditation references!
You’re welcome Linda! If you find others meditations you love, let me know. I really enjoy Kelly Howell.
I think there are a lot of people out there struggling with family dysfunction. I know I am one. It is always good (not in a happy way) to hear other peoples stories so I do not feel like it is just me or that I am a bad person for not getting along with my family. Thank you for sharing. I look forward to whats next for you and your blog.
Thanks Pam! I believe this is all human nature in some ways. Our family history predates me – there was a lot of strife in our family long before I was born. I’m the kind of person that calls it out which gets me into trouble. Mark has been a great husband and doesn’t let me focus on it too long. We try to live our life and to be in the moment. Since his son passed away woodworking became his passion which helps him get lost in thought and look forward.
Jeanette, I am so glad to have found someone who not only shares a sense of style but also appreciates the need to accommodate a link with The Source of inner peace and joy. I am looking forward to spending more time exploring your site and getting to know you better, Thank you for sharing so much of yourself and be blessed.
The first time I met you at the Hilliard vintage fair, I knew you were a special Women.
You have a twinkle in your eye when you talk about all of your creative projects and passion all of your future plans!
We appreciate that you participated in our Holiday Hop with St. Brigid last yr, you were very well received.!
I know it’s far to come for a couple of hrs during the wk. however we would love you to join us as a vendor again this yr. It will be held on Nov. 14th Please keep us in the loop.
Everything I purchased from you, I adore and treasure both in my house and beach condo.
I especially love the blue crab pillows! Your web site is great!
It’s refreshing that you put your heart and soul into your family and business.
Hope to hear from you soon!
Thanks Doreen! It was my pleasure to attend your event, it was lovely. I won’t be able to attend this year unfortunately. Thank you for remembering me. I’m so glad you love your purchases, I remember you founds some fun goods for your Florida home.
Haven’t written in awhile. I am so empressed with the way you move on. My family is almost gone now. My kids all but one are doing there own thing. My husband brought me here when we were young. I’ve never made real friends. My best friends from home came a lot till they died of cancer. I think I told you my daughter was murdered. I’m so lonesome. I’ve gone to public things just to make friends but people just don’t seem to like me. I mean even before I say something. I don’t know why. I’m kind and happy and smile. What is wrong with me lol? One lady asked me if I wanted to join her excercizing club at her home and I said ok yes! I met her at a child’s birthday party and she looked at me and said well maybe later. Really? The same party I began to talk to a lady that was sitting across from me, just small talk and she said, I have enough friends I don’t really need any more. I said nothing about that and who has enough friends? A friend of my daughter’s wife that I have been super nice to for years was at my son’s graduation and I said we ought to get together more and she said well, uh no. Now that one hurt and I haven’t spoken to her since which I guess she’s glad for. I don’t understand. No wonder so many people are lonely. So I’m wondering what you would do. You have a lovely way of looking at things. I would so love to see my old friend pull up in the driveway (she used too) and walk in and say “ let’s get out of here” and off we’d go. I am at a loss and even people who have called me a friend to my face never invite me to girls night out or anything else. I’d love your advice.