People angry about masks. Social isolation. A consistent lack of cleaning supplies. Hateful words and fighting. It’s been months and it’s wearing on me.
I quickly become irritated with people I love. I find myself judging and labeling others. Essentially, I don’t feel like me and I catch myself hastily reacting rather than patiently responding to life events.
Like many, I have a strong daily spiritual practice. Each morning, before I do anything, I take time and intentionally start each day in a higher state of consciousness than I when I woke. I read. I journal. I steep myself in gratitude.
Lately I’m finding it’s not making a dent in my experience of the chaos in the world.
It’s been seven months since the pandemic started and even though many things feel back to normal, they are not. We are still bearing the weight of massive changes to our economies, our families, and how we commune with each other. Fear and scarcity reign. The world is in the throes of the Black Lives Matter movement, a highly charged election in the U.S. is upon us, and threats of another wave of the Coronavirus are here.
With that said, what worked in the past may no longer cut the mustard! If, like me, you are struggling to stay grounded in today’s world it may mean your spiritual practice needs a reset. Let’s look at some ways to take your spiritual practice to the next level.
Tips for getting through the next six months or more:
Tips for Getting Through the Next Six Months and More:
- Shake up your Spiritual Practice. If you have the same routine for your spiritual practice each day the times may call for you to shake things up a bit. If you pray each morning, try journaling. Read uplifting teachings? Experiment with a book or workbook from a different source. Try something new.
- Utilize the power of words. For example, try using different words to connect with Spirit. I recently heard a list of ninety-nine different names for God, all of which have a completely different feel. Examples are: Universal Spirit. Inner light. Invisible Essence. The Spirit of Peace. Get a complete list of the 99 names for God here.
- Expose yourself to different spiritual practices. Right now, it is easier than ever to explore different practices as so many places of worship have added or expanded their online presence. I encourage you to look beyond different types of meditation if you already have a meditation practice. Explore Judaism or Hinduism rather than different ways to expand your current practice. Experience something different to jolt yourself into a different frame of mind.
- Take time daily to remove yourself from the collective consciousness. Also called race consciousness, the collective consciousness is the cumulative thoughts, feelings and emotions of our communities. A myriad of emotions, upheaval and unrest are coming at us from all angles. Our families, our communities, our countries all have reactions and responses to these and other stimuli. Taking time to separate from everyone else and be in your own body, grounded and alone, is healthy. It allows you to feel your own emotions and not be swept up with “the wave” of everyone else’s reactions as easily.
- Don’t forget your physical body! Pigging out on junk food and drinking alcohol can be soothing once in a while, but you can’t make a habit of it. Particularly when stressed and you aren’t feeling yourself, show yourself the love of eating healthy foods, getting outside, and moving your body.
- Don’t spend too much time watching the news. With fast-changing world events it’s easy to over stimulate on the news. In addition to the traditional morning and evening news, we are exposed to updates all day on Facebook and other social media channels. And while it’s important to stay up to date on local and national news, it’s easy to become transfixed. We binge-watch the news thinking the information gives us control. However, there is a balance and it’s easy to fall into a trance-like state, paralyzed in front of the television all day. This isn’t good for your mental health and while you may feel better in the short term, studies show in the long term it leads to increased anxiety and worry.
- Increase the frequency of your spiritual practice. Connecting with the presence of God is not about duration, but frequency. Several short connections with Spirit can be more refreshing and have more long-term effects than one long one. And, because it is shorter in length it is less likely to get skipped.
Maintaining your sanity thru your spiritual practice may be more difficult now than ever before. Keep your practice strong and viable! Be flexible about what it looks like, forgive yourself if you struggle, and keep at it!
Keep at it as if the world depends on it – because it does.
Kelly Robbins, MA is the author of Trust Your Next Step: Creating the Confidence to Cut Fresh Tracks and produces the Fresh Tracks with Kelly Robbins podcast. Grab a copy of 10 Steps to Creating Your Fresh Tracks now for free here: https://kellyrobbins.net/theedge/