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Five Ways to Put Spirituality into Practice

Spiritual practices are specific activities you do to deepen your relationships with the sacred and the world around you. They can include meditation, breathing exercises, prayer or conducting rituals. They can be done alone or in the company and with others.

 

#1 Plan Your Spirituality Practice

Life is full of choices and if you want to live a more spiritual life and appreciate its benefits, you’ll want to make choices that allow you to practice spirituality regularly. Studies on spirituality and psychological well-being show a positive association but sometimes (let’s be honest, all of the time?), life gets busy. Life isn’t about to slow down for us so if you want to enjoy the health and well-being benefits a regular spirituality practice affords, you have to plan for it. Make it a daily habit or ritual to focus on your practice.

 

#2 Engage in Spiritual Self-Care

Spending time in nature, journaling, practicing gratitude, yoga, meditation, painting, all of these can be a form of spiritual self-care. They allow for deeper exploration and reflection for greater clarity on our emotions and thoughts.

The activities don’t need to be complicated, take a lot of time or cost anything. You can start each day meditating, saying a prayer or exercising. You can head outdoors mid-day to enjoy time in nature. You can read books on spirituality. Whatever you decide to do, make sure it aligns with your values because you’ll be more likely to make it a regular habit if you enjoy the experience.

 

#3 Learn When to Say No

Setting boundaries is an important part of our mental health and wellbeing. It’s so easy to say yes when we’re asking because we may feel guilty for saying no. It may help to remember relationships are a two-way street and no one wants their colleague, friend or family member to feel obligated or angry to do something they don’t want to do. Would you? If saying no immediately is a challenge, let the person know you’d like some time to think about the ask or suggest they reach out to someone else. We’re all in this journey of life together and learning to say no allows you to give your full attention to the people and experiences you want in your life.

 

#4 Don’t Forget to Breathe

This sounds simple enough since we cannot survive without breathing. Except most of us aren’t breathing correctly. I didn’t even know this was possible until my physical therapist brought it to my attention. Short and shallow breaths use your shoulders rather than your diaphragm to move air in and out of your lungs. According to Harvard Business Review, “when you inhale, your heart rate speeds up. When you exhale, it slows down. Breathing in for a count of four and out for a count of eight for just a few minutes can start to calm your nervous system.”

Taking care of ourselves is part of a daily spiritual practice. Enhancing our sense of purpose and meaning increases feelings of happiness and well-being. Taking time throughout the day to inhale and exhale deep breaths gives us the space to also focus on what we’re grateful for at that particular time.

 

#5 Seek Support from a Spiritual Mentor or Therapist

We don’t know what we don’t know or sometimes it helps to have an accountability partner.  A regularly scheduled meeting with a therapist or spiritual mentor who can guide and advise can help you gain insights into things you’ve never even considered. Connecting with others who have similar intentions will help you develop a healthier relationship with yourself and others.

 

Taking the time to put spirituality into practice can help us bring a sense of purpose and peace in our life. As we begin a new year, it’s also a great time to reflect on what is working for us, what isn’t and carve out time to do more of the things that bring us peace and happiness.

 

 

Megy Karydes
Author: Megy Karydes

Megy Karydes is a Chicago-based writer. Her new book, 50 Ways to More Calm, Less Stress: Scientifically Proven Ways to Relieve Anxiety and Boost Your Mental Health Using Your Five Senses, will be available January 2024. Sign up for her free monthly newsletter to receive more self care tips at

Website: https://www.megykarydes.com

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