Spiritual Wellness and Why It MattersDr. Jim Collins
Among the seven dimensions of wellness – physical, intellectual, environmental, vocational, social, emotional – spiritual wellness may be the source for bringing the other dimensions harmoniously together. It may actually be the most personal and intimate dimension and greatly influence every realm in our lives.
What Is Spiritual Wellness?
Most people want to live with purpose, meaning and passion. They believe that they matter and make a difference while accepting the concept that they are connected to something much larger than themselves. Spiritual wellness may be driven by one’s values and beliefs. When people meet their personal goals and do so according to their principles and ethics, they can experience great spiritual wellness and deep inner joy.
It Takes Work and Focus
We live incredibly complex lives and can be distracted by many things that don’t enhance life or even make us happy. Technology dominates the lives of many people whether they are glued to their cell phones, gaming or working. It can be easy to neglect important aspects of life. Spiritual wellness just doesn’t appear out of nowhere. It takes effort, planning and various techniques to fully experience this important part of our lives.
7 Ways to Develop and Maintain Spiritual Wellness
1. Personally Reflect and Explore
The journey to greater spiritual wellness begins with turning inward and being honest with yourself about who you are, what you value, and what gives you purpose and meaning. Think deeply about yourself more often to begin noticing things about yourself that you may have missed before. Deeply reflect on what matters most in your life and the lives you touch.
2. Meditate, Pray and Search for Deeper Meaning
Science constantly demonstrates the many physical and emotional benefits of meditation and prayer, including reduced stress and better cardiovascular health. They are means of searching one’s meaning in life. They offer us ways of thinking, focusing, and communicating internally about the more important things in life. They can also offer us better control and mastery of our lives.
3. Give Yourself the Time Necessary to Connect
Time well-spent becomes more important as we age, and time devoted to our spiritual health can yield many positive outcomes. Happiness and joy can be achieved by taking ten minutes a day to connect to your thoughts and emotions. Doing so may even help to not only reduce stress at home or work, but may reduce your risk of burnout. Dedicate time to yourself.
4. Seek a Positive Role Model or Mentor
Learning from others who have been walking the path to spiritual health and wellness may be very beneficial to those starting out on their journey. If you belong to religious groups, that someone might be your priest, pastor or rabbi. If you are more secular, family members, close friends, teachers, and other highly respected community members may become good sources of spiritual leadership.
5. Take Yoga Seriously
Yoga involves combining elements of meditation and breathing exercises with a full-body workout. It is a holistic practice that increases flexibility, improves overall health and sleep, reduces stress and anxiety, helps with depression and helps you concentrate on your inner self. By removing distractions like stress or pain, you can work towards greater spiritual health.
6. Travel to New Places and Those That Bring You Great Joy
Sometimes it takes us getting out of our routines and physical spaces that we occupy on a daily basis and going to places that allow us to look around, breathe, and be still. The ocean or any large body of water brings joy and reflection to many people. Camping under the stars and searching for meaning is another great way to work on our spiritual well-being.
7. Practice and Maintain Positive Thinking
Another important practice that can greatly impact spiritual wellness is training yourself to avoid negative thinking and replace it with positive thinking. This also takes practice and time, but is well worth your effort. Many people are addicted to negative thinking which makes them unfulfilled emotionally, mentally and spiritually. Positive thinking, on the other hand, refocuses your mind to gratitude, joy and spiritual fulfillment.
Final Thoughts on Spiritual Wellness
Spiritual wellness matters. In fact, it may be the single element that binds together all other forms of wellness including our physical and emotional health, our careers and social lives, the environmental space we live in and our minds. As you can see, there are many ways to enhance your spiritual well-being. And if it’s true that our spiritual wellness is this important, shouldn’t we take the time to slow down, pray, reflect, search, and fulfill our true purpose in life?