Spirituality embodies many essential principles that are important for one’s mental and physical well-being, such as acceptance or the ability to surrender. It involves an examination of how each of us relates to the environments that we are in and helps us to experience our own unique sense of the divine. There is no right or wrong way to be spiritual.
Spirituality also plays a crucial role in many addiction recovery programs because it enables an individual to live a meaningful life full of connection and love. Spirituality and religion often intertwine; however, one does not necessitate the other. A key part of spirituality is that it fosters a sense of connection — to nature, to the divine, to each other, and to oneself.
Many of us will, at some point in our lives, question our own understanding and experience of spirituality. If you find yourself questioning what you truly need or believe about the world around you, you may be beginning your spiritual journey. Progress along one’s spiritual journey can come and go in phases, but most commonly understand spirituality as a life-long journey. Here we offer some ways that you can tap into your unique spiritual journey.
Start With Daily Meditation
Many forms of mindfulness can help a person to feel connected to the bigger picture of life. Meditation, specifically, takes this idea and emphasizes it while highlighting the importance of acceptance and non-judgment. It can be used in a variety of settings to promote one’s mental, physical, and emotional well-being.
Meditation can be practiced for any amount of time. For some people, it takes days or weeks of meditation before they see a difference in perspective or cognitive processing. If you have not experienced meditation before, start with daily morning meditations for 5-15 minutes. You can participate in guided meditations online with specific intentions, such as to reduce stress or increase positivity, play melodic or white noise music, or sit still and quietly with your thoughts.
The primary intention of meditation is to bring full awareness and concentration to your internal thoughts and sensations without judging them. If you find yourself thinking about a stressful situation, try to become a more objective observer of your distressing thoughts. Over time, this mental practice will lead you to develop more genuine and authentic intentions for everything you do and plan for in the future. Meditation helps you to connect to the purest essence of yourself.
Let Your Intuition Guide You
When our head and our heart disagree on the next course of action, we often find ourselves in distressing situations. We each have a unique sense of intuition that helps us stay safe and healthy in any given situation. If you are looking to connect spiritually, allow yourself to rely on your intuition. What does your heart say about what is happening? How does this experience truly make you feel? Acknowledge your own understanding of the voice within you. Discover your own journey by listening to your gut in everything that you do.
Practice External Acceptance
As you continue on your spiritual journey, you will understand how unique and special every single person truly is. Each of us is on our own journeys, which makes it nearly impossible to compare growth from one person to another. We will always be learning from others and trying to understand what affects other people’s feelings, actions, and experiences. It is in our human nature to judge others, sometimes out of envy or jealousy, especially when someone is doing something that may not align with your moral beliefs or values. Although we have the freedom to judge others, everyone deserves to be uniquely their own person. This does not mean you have to agree with everything that others may do, but starting from a place of judgment will lead to further division and disconnection in our world. When you are honoring your own spiritual journey, you will learn to honor others regardless of where they are on their journey.
Participate in Acts of Service
Spirituality focuses on kindness, compassion, and love. Whether you are familiar with these emotional expressions or find yourself closed off from them, acts of service can help you to strengthen healthy attitudes like kindness. There are many ways that you can get involved in your community by volunteering or serving others. Community-building activities can also help you navigate new relationships, which give you a great platform to strengthen relational skills. Although spirituality emphasizes connection with oneself, it is not a solo journey. Connecting with others in a meaningful way helps you to grow emotionally, physically, and spiritually.
Spirituality describes a practice of connection. Spirituality and religion are often, but not necessarily, intertwined. Spirituality embodies a connection to ourselves and to the external world, such as our connection to nature or to the divine. Many of us may question how we even begin our spiritual journeys, knowing that we want to seek truth inside and outside of ourselves. Strengthening our spiritual connection can be done through mindful practices such as meditation, gratitude, and acceptance. By acknowledging and listening to your gut, you will find yourself feeling a great source of compassion and respect for yourself and others. West Coast Recovery Centers acknowledge that spirituality can play a pivotal role in addiction and mental illness recovery. Our staff can connect you with the resources tailored to you that fit your unique understanding of spirituality. For more information about our treatment options, please give us a call today at (760) 492-6509.