Embrace Spirituality, The Benefits Are Endless
Psychology Today describes spirituality as "an adventure park waiting to be explored," and explains that the notion of spirituality cannot be completely defined as it is simply a "boundary-less dimension of the human experience."
In layman's terms, you may very well be familiar with the iconic yin-yang symbol. This symbol is spirituality embodied, as it represents change in colours light and dark that represent the good and the bad, bringing about balance and harmony in a holistic way. In the good, there will always be bad - and in the bad, there will always be good.
This balance brings about many positive attributes to one's life - such as feeling connected to something bigger, and believing that everything happens for a reason. It also encourages one to let go when things don't go as planned as you know that not everything is within your control, but rather - in the universe's control.
What's even better is that having a sense of spirituality makes a big impact on one's happiness. When you start to believe in and embrace spirituality, you will begin to feel a sense of belonging and community. This warm feeling leads you to the conclusion that you're not alone, and that the universe is working for you, not against you - even when things don't go your way.
But when you actively engage in inward-looking reflection, or introspection, whereby you are willing to learn more about who you are and your purpose on Earth, you not only find yourself feeling more empathetic, compassionate, and peaceful, but are always rewarded with a number of different health benefits, such as:
- Less Stress and Reduced Depression
It has been found that those who engage in spirituality are mentally and emotionally stronger during stressful times, such as exams, grief, or disappointment, than those who do not. This is because spirituality encourages us to look at the bigger picture, and not to dwell on negative times, as these 'bad' experiences are all part of one's journey in life.
- Reduced Chronic Fatigue and Lower Blood Pressure with Spiritual Practices
Another reason why those who actively participate in spirituality are healthier, feel more calm, and at peace, is because there are many practices linked to this notion. Meditation, yoga, prayer, and journaling are a few activities that spiritual people practice.
Participating in one or more of these activities can decrease feelings of stress, anxiety, and depression. This, in turn, may lead to lower blood pressure, cancer and type 2 diabetes prevention, and a drop in chronic fatigue.
- Respect for One's Body
Research has shown that spiritual people are more prone to treating their body with kindness, and they tend not to participate in unhealthy behaviours such as drinking, smoking, and overeating. It has also been found that spiritual people are more likely to practice preventative measures when it comes to safety and health, such as wearing seatbelts and taking vitamins.
- Forgiveness, Which Leads to Better Health
Modern science says that if we can let go of negative situations and practice forgiveness, we can enjoy many health benefits such as better functioning of the immune system, a longer lifespan, lower blood pressure, and improved heart health.
In addition to the physical benefits of practicing spirituality, the emotional benefits are equally as attractive. Those who engage in spirituality have a great sense of:
- Meaning and Purpose: Everyday is a gift, and every person has a purpose. When you believe this, your life will be enriched and you will be more inclined to have personal goals as well as the drive to achieve them.
- Appreciation: Spirituality leads to the appreciation of all of the world's natural beauty. Having a feeling of appreciation is one of the most important attributes to living a positive life, according to psychology.
- Understanding: With increased empathy and forgiveness, one's lifespan increases, anger is reduced, and relationships are strengthened.
Having said all of this, here are a few simple changes you can make in your life to practice spirituality:
- Read: Start reading books, articles, and religious texts that teach you about spirituality, helping others, and engaging in introspection.
- Art: Of late, art has been linked to spirituality in a big way. Painting, writing, drawing, or even creating music allows one to feel a deeper intrinsic connection to themselves and with others. Additionally, visiting art museums and appreciating works of art also increases empathy and deep-thinking.
- Meditation: Set aside 20 minutes per day to contemplate life, who you are, your goals and how you can achieve them. This is a time to shut out your every day stressors such as work, personal conflicts and more.
- Yoga: Practicing yoga increases the connection to your body, and brings about feelings of peace. Alternatively, a dance class has proven to be just as beneficial.
- Friends: Find friends who are also interested in, and who practice, spirituality. They will encourage you, be a positive influence in your life, and be there to enjoy the journey with you.
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Wishing you a day full of peace and positivity,