There is a difference between your ego and your soul. Your ego is the image you have of yourself and your social mask, whereas your soul is who you truly are deep down below all the labels and titles. It's eternal, divine and inherently worthwhile.
When you learn to align more with your soul each day, life seems to flow more naturally and taking action is less of a struggle.
You feel a greater sense of freedom, joy, satisfaction, empowerment and inner peace. You love and accept yourself deeply, even when things aren't going perfectly to plan.
Unfortunately we're not taught how to align with our soul, and after years of being controlled by the fears, worries and constant chatter of our ego, it can take a little patience to find our way to this place of safety and strength within us.
Here are 10 ways to get more in touch with your soul. Making time for one or two of them each week can have a profound impact on your happiness, well-being and life.
1. Spend time in nature.
Nature can have a calming effect and reminds us to slow down, take deep breaths and soak up the present moment. Go for a bushwalk, run on the beach, lay in the grass at the park, or do stretches by the water.
2. Write a soul journal.
It's a bit like writing a traditional diary, only you're going to go deeper. You pose questions to your soul, such as "Where am I stuck?" and "What is preventing me from achieving my dreams?" You then write down your immediate thoughts and feelings without any self-censoring to see what inner wisdom arises.
3. Schedule solo dates.
We can become so busy ticking off to-do lists and catching up with others that we forget to check in with ourselves. So schedule in a weekly solo expedition to get to know yourself a bit better. Take yourself for a coffee, visit a gallery exhibition, read a book, take a creative class or visit a new part of town.
4. Take yoga classes.
Yoga is a beautiful way to align your mind with your body. As you focus your attention on your breathing and positioning, you get a chance to silence your mind and cultivate a lasting sense of inner peace to carry with you for the rest of the day.
When you tune out from the noise of the world and your own internal worries and circling thoughts, your inner guide has a moment to speak to you. Try spending five minutes meditating with a soul-soothing mantra such as "I've got nowhere to go, nothing to do. Nowhere to go, nothing to do."
It could be as simple as taking a new route to work, or as magnificent as booking a trip around the world. Either way, when you mix up your routine and experience new places, you shake yourself free from your comfort zone and old habits. This gives you a chance to lean on your intuition and inner guide more.
7. Take long walks.
This is one of the simplest ways to clear your mind. Pay attention to what's around you and see everything through new eyes of awe and appreciation.
8. Offer to help others.
When you're giving your time, energy and love to other people, you momentarily forget all of your ego-based worries and problems, and align with your true spirit, which is generous and open-hearted.
9. Make time to just be.
Sit and do nothing for a few moments. Listen to the sounds going on around you, scan your body for sensations, and enjoy a few deep breaths from your diaphragm. As Eckhart Tolle points out, "One conscious breath in and out is a meditation."
10. Lose yourself in something you love.
It could be dancing, cooking, writing, running, painting or any number of things. When you're caught up in something you really love, your mind goes quiet and your soul takes over. It's a beautiful, freeing feeling and something we should all strive to experience more often.
Elyse is the founder of NotesOnBliss.com, your guidebook to happiness and creating a beautiful life, and the creator of the Beautiful Life Bootcamp 6-week eCourse. For free tips and inspiration, sign up now.