Reconnecting with your spiritual self can certainly be transformative. And, as with most transformations, it will take time and effort. Try out a few of these simple steps in your daily life to move forward—they will make a difference!
1. Encourage gratitude. Being grateful for others fills your heart with appreciation. You can encourage gratitude in your life by starting your day with thoughts of gratefulness. Before you even get out of bed, think of at least one thing, one situation, or one being that you are grateful for. Let yourself appreciate this focus of gratitude for a few moments. Smile while you are having these thoughts of appreciation. You could also keep a gratitude journal and each night before bed jot down the things you were grateful for that day. Find ways to cultivate gratitude for the infinite blessings we are presented with each day.
2. Give yourself a glance of loving-kindness. When you catch a glimpse of yourself in a mirror, smile at your reflection. Throughout the day acknowledge yourself, even if just for a brief moment, with genuine loving-kindness. We cannot say it better than inspired Buddhist teacher Pema Chodron: “When you begin to touch your heart or let your heart be touched, you begin to discover that it is bottomless, that it doesn’t have any resolution, that this heart is huge, vast and limitless. You begin to discover how much warmth and gentleness there is, as well as how much space.” Bathe yourself and those you love in kindness and compassion.
3. Speak from the heart. Think about someone you love and why you love them. Create some time to communicate with this person—either tell them in person or in writing about your love and appreciation. It doesn’t have to be a big, drawn-out event—just a simple act of you speaking the truth of your experience of love and gratitude for the opportunity to share it. Be authentic in your expression. Remember that in every day there exists opportunities to feel and express love. Search out those moments and soon they will become a part of the fabric of your life.
4. Embrace favorite pastimes. What are some of the top things you love to do? Can you find at least one of these activities in every day? Yesterday? Today? Relish the moments that you do get to enjoy these cherished activities, and if you can, insert at least one of them in each day. Make a list of your favorite pastimes and post the list where you can see it. Tell others what you love to do so they can encourage you to find time to do what you love.
5. Seek out social support. Don’t underestimate the dangers of isolation. If you don’t have a strong support system with family and friends, consider joining a mutual-interest group, like a book club. Take a class or begin volunteering with others. And if you do have a strong support system, make time for them and include them in your spirit-filled life.
6. Cultivate laughter. Watch funny movies, hang out with funny friends, start laughing even if nothing is funny, and do whatever it takes to laugh frequently. The comedian Milton Berle once said: “Laughter is an instant vacation.” Take one today! Laughter is physically, emotionally and spiritually healing. And it’s not just laughter it’s also the physical act of smiling. How many times do you smile throughout the day? Make smiling a part of your daily routine.
Editor’s Note: This article was excerpted from the Five to Thrive magazine. To subscribe, click here. To learn more about this great new digital magazine, see below:
Lise Alschuler, ND, FABNO, is a highly respected naturopathic oncologist and a sought-after speaker to both consumers and healthcare professionals on the topic of integrative cancer prevention and treatment. Karolyn A. Gazella is the publisher of Wellness Times and Natural Medicine Journal. Together Alschuler and Gazella have written Five to Thrive: Your Cutting-Edge Cancer Prevention Plan (Active Interest Media 2011) and The Definitive Guide to Cancer (Random House revised 3rd Edition 2010). The are also the hosts of Five to Thrive Live on the Cancer Support Network. For more information visit FivetoThrivePlan.com.