Want to find more spirituality in your life but not sure how? Spirituality is not about what you're doing; it's about what you're being. You can find inner peace and greater awareness in the middle of Manhattan, just as you can be stressed out and worried while walking on a paradise beach. Here are some tips on getting more connected without abandoning your daily routine.
1. Live in the moment
This is one we have all heard of, but how often do we manage to actually do it? Talking about being in the moment is not the same as being in the moment. The great thing about it, is there is only one time when you can actually decide to do it, and that is right now! It's a simple choice. The choice to become intensely aware of what is happening in this moment, instead of wandering off in the distractions of the past and future. What are you focused on now? Are you really savoring this article, or looking for the next distraction? That's a choice that is in your hands.
2. Stop judging yourself
This is a hard one, because we all judge ourselves so much! We judge what we feel, what we think, what we do or fail to do. The energy we waste on judging ourselves is phenomenal. When you realize you are judging yourself, just watch your thoughts. Don't judge the judgment; that just makes things worse! Instead, think, Oh yes, I'm judging myself again! And laugh. By simply observing your judgmental thoughts, it will be easier for you to let them go and choose something new. Judgments are violence; they destroy your peace, your wellbeing. They are also a waste of time: there is nothing you can do to change a past moment.
3. Feel your emotions
Feeling your emotions is a vital element of spiritual growth. Our emotions are one of the things we have learned to judge the most. Some of us have learned we should never cry, others that we should never get angry. But emotions are a natural part of human life, and if we try to avoid them, they don't disappear. Emotions are like a river. If we dam them up, the water builds up and builds up, exerting ever more pressure, until finally it is too much. Then the dam bursts open in a bout of rage, a deep depression or a panic attack. If we allow our emotions to follow a natural course, however, they flow quickly through us, and we are able to embrace their peaks and troughs from a place of inner calm.
4. Let go
Clinging to how we think things should look causes unnecessary stress and tension. By choosing to embrace what is and flow with the changes life brings, you will open up to more peace and harmony in all aspects of life.
5. Take responsibility for your happiness
Joy is an experience we can choose for in each moment. We have come to believe that happiness is a goal we must work towards, a result of completing the "list of things we need" in order to feel fulfilled. What's on your list? The kids, the marriage, the successful career....Do you notice that once you get those things, the list just keeps getting longer? The promotion, the vacation, the retirement? When we put our happiness in the future, we are destined to wait forever, because the future will never arrive. We are so accustomed to waiting for something more, that even when that something finally comes, we are incapable of enjoying it; we are too busy waiting for something else! Stop waiting for happiness, and open up to enjoy what you are experiencing now. If you focus on appreciating the good things you have right now, you will start to create more of that in your future.
6. Speak the truth
This sounds simple, but it is actually one of the hardest things for us to do: we lie all the time! They may be "little" lies, and we will often find ourselves justifying them as a way to protect others from feeling hurt, but if we are really honest with ourselves, we find that we only ever lie for the same reason: to protect ourselves. Lies never lead to more love. Telling the truth can be uncomfortable, it can generate conflict, but ultimately the truth leads to greater trust, greater transparency. It is often the people we love the most that it is hardest for us to speak truthfully to, because we are so afraid of being rejected, of losing their love. But when you do have the courage to put honesty before the need to please, you will create greater respect and more intimate relationships. Ultimately, if someone is not willing to hear your truth, they are not willing to accept you as you are. Ask yourself this: are those the kind of people I want in my life?
What helps you stay connected in the midst of the world? I'd love to hear about it in the comments section. You can receive notice of this blog every week by clicking on "Become a Fan" at the top of this page.
Isha's latest book and movie, "Why Walk When You Can Fly?" explains her system for self-love and the expansion of consciousness. Her website is www.isha.com