The Power of Spiritual Practice
Do you find yourself saying that you would like to try meditation, take a yoga class, go for a walk after lunch, but that you’re just too busy? The most common block to having a spiritual practice is busy-ness. We women who do too much try multitasking so many things each day that we end up prioritising, consciously or subconsciously, all of them as being more important than ourselves. We put our to do lists before any time devoted to making contact with the place within us that is true and real. But, when we finally take time out to connect with our inner guidance, we enter into the bliss of unlimited unconditional love, peace and creativity, which infinitely improves our experience of the world and we once again begin to remember how wonderful we really are. When we remember this truth about ourselves we instantaneously remember this truth about everyone else too. We experience a sense of connection with everything and everyone. We remember we are all one. We realign with our purpose to serve others by more fully celebrating ourselves.
So if that’s what comes from having a spiritual practice, what could really be any more important than prioritising your own spiritual practice each day?
Meditation is one of the most popular forms of spiritual practices and also one of the most resisted. Our minds can create all kinds of excuses to prevent us from giving it a go, or maintaining a meditation routine. Meditation requires nothing more than simply by taking 5 minutes out each day to focus on your breath, relax into your body and let go of any tension – and has the power to completely transform your experience of the day ahead. If you find it difficult to focus at first try playing some relaxing music without any lyrics, sit somewhere comfortable with your feet on the floor and back up straight. Close your eyes and acknowledge your thoughts as if they are clouds, gently noticing them and letting them drift by without engaging with them, trusting that you can come back to them later. Breathe deeply into your abdomen and turn your focus to how it feels as you breathe in fully and exhale all the stale air you’ve been holding in your lungs. Start with doing this for just 1 minute on the first day, then increase the time you sit to 2 minutes, then 3, then 4, until you are able to sit for a full 5 minutes in meditation. A guided meditation can be really useful if you are new to quieting your mind in this way and would like a helping hand. Click here to try my Power-Up signature guided meditation and fill out the sign up box at the top of the page.
To dispel some of the myths about having a spiritual practice – no you do not need to dress in robes, join any kind of religion or cult, walk around chanting, give up alcohol or abstain from sex – in fact I would suggest that making love to your partner is a fantastic form of spiritual practice. Anything that connects you more fully to your sense of centeredness and collective connectedness, inner power, passions or purpose can be termed spiritual practice. This could mean time spent in meditation or prayer, but it could also be performing random acts of kindness for others, spending time painting or journaling, enjoying dancing or swimming, walking each morning in nature or playing every evening with your dog.
Your own personal spiritual practice may be something you in a similar way each and every day, a bit like a morning ritual – for example one of my clients takes a few minutes before she gets out of bed to set a positive intention for what she wants to experience during the day ahead, then she gets up slowly and stretches all of her body, she calls this ‘limbering up for the day’, next she pops on the kettle while she makes breakfast, then she settles herself comfortably with a chapter of her favourite book and eats her breakfast purposefully ensuring she’s fueled up and ready for the day ahead. It might be that a ritual like this doesn’t appeal to you, in which case you may like to create a pick and mix list of various things that you choose from, differing day to day; some that connect you to your sense of wholeness, others which uplift and invigorate, and those that gently reassure you that all is well.
Have fun creating a spiritual practice that works for you. There are no rules. There is no right way or wrong way. Just commit to doing something each and every day that makes you feel good, that honours your uniqueness, celebrates who you are and cherishes your greatest vision of all you can become. Begin it now.