I don’t think I’m the only person in the world who sometimes has trouble walking the walk when it comes to spirituality/religion. Perhaps you’re new to a path and are struggling to move beyond the memorization of ritual to fulfilling connection to the Divine. Maybe you’re a longtime practitioner who’s become stuck on autopilot. Whatever the reason, it’s important to check in with how you’re doing, and if you need to, add a little something to revitalize your practice and live your faith. Here are some simple things you can do that can really boost your connection to Spirit even if you only have a few minutes to spare.
- Set the Spiritual tone for your day. Living your faith means going beyond formal rituals– you can only go so far by being a Sunday School Christian, a Yom Kippur Jew or a Sabbat Pagan. Now, if you’re fine staying at this level, that’s great! You’re good right where you are (high fives all around). But if you want to take your faith further, you gotta step out beyond the shadow of formality. Formal rituals and holidays can be great times to connect with deity or spirit or ancestors or whatever you are searching for, but they aren’t meant to be your only access to the Divine! You can do it anytime, anywhere. And one way to deepen your connection is to start off your day in a spiritual mindset. I accomplish this by giving thanks before I get out of bed every morning. This can be a long prayer, or something short and sweet. I simply say, “Thank you for today.” I do this before my feet touch the ground on the side of my bed, and then I begin the process of getting ready for work. You can do the same before you go to bed at night, so the first thing and last think you do in your day is something spiritual.
- Sixty seconds (or more) of Reflection. Sometimes we get overwhelmed with our busy lives and we may put some things on the back burner, and at least for me, my spiritual practice has been back there more than once. Sometimes there just aren’t enough hours in the day, and just thinking about doing a full ritual can seem like too much. So instead of overwhelming yourself, try this: step back, find a quiet place, and give yourself a quiet place, and reflect on what made you feel connected today. It doesn’t have to be a spiritual experience, just something that made you feel like you were part of something. Give yourself sixty seconds of undivided attention, a little boost in your day. If you have extra time, try to go for five minutes of reflection/meditation around what made you feel connected, even if it was something small.
- Add a visual. If you go through your whole day without connecting in some way, a visual reminder can be helpful! This can be something you wear, like a bracelet or necklace, or something like a trinket or picture you put up somewhere in your regular line of sight. Got a desk job (like me)? If you feel comfortable doing so, put a little miniature goddess statue on your desk next to your computer, or a picture of the pope (is this a thing? I think it’s a thing) on the wall facing you, or whatever is a symbol of your faith. This is an easy way to remind yourself to dig deeper when you can, and to remember that you’re part of something bigger than yourself. For me, that is really comforting.
Spiritual paths aren’t about just going through the motions, it’s also about making meaning in out of the mundane in our everyday lives, recognizing and celebrating the interconnectedness of our world and finding strength in that. And these three tips are so easy to integrate into our busy lives, you might be surprised what a difference these little actions can make in the spiritual department.