This article is written in partnership with Kasamba. They offer spiritual and life guidance through rated psychics and if it may be of benefit, when used mindfully, we’re open to it. ~ ed.
“We are not human beings having a spiritual experience. We are spiritual beings having a human experience.” ~ Pierre Teilhard de Chardin
The Wheel of Life: if you’ve ever worked with a life coach, chances are you’ve mapped one.
I’ve also seen it whipped out at more than one motivational talk and workshop.
It’s basically a circle divided into segments, the axes of which represent the key areas of your life. You map each segment or axis on a scale of 1-10 to represent how satisfying or full that area of your life is. Then, you join each point on each axis to form the inevitably wonky shape that shows clearly which areas of your life you are neglecting.
Things like family, friends, career, health, money, and leisure all feature in every version I’ve seen. But, especially in more current versions, there’s one fundamental area that’s often forgotten: spiritual wellness.
Unsurprising, since it’s a large part of our existence that most of us tend to neglect until we experience some kind of life-changing event, crisis, or breakdown.
Spiritual wellness underlies every other wellness—physical, mental, relational, social, professional, and financial.
It’s like the roots of a tree, or the foundation of a building. It can’t be ignored as it can profoundly affect each and every one of our life areas.
We can exercise, eat well, take good supplements, and get medical help when we need to, but how much attention are we really paying to our spiritual health on a regular basis? For most of us, the answer is not much.
And it seems like a pretty large oversight when you consider that our spiritual well-being has a proven direct impact on our physical health.
In a 2019 study of breast cancer patients in Thailand, researchers found that “patients who have good SWB (spiritual well-being) will have better QoL (quality of life), more satisfaction with their healthcare, and acceptance of their disease. Terminal patients who have high SWB also reported fewer physical symptoms and a lower risk of depression as well.”
We may visit a doctor when we are in real need of direction on matters of physical health, but what do we do for matters of the soul? Many find it invaluable to have a spiritual teacher, guide, or advisor to call on when it comes to spiritual health.
There are also a lot of practical things we can do ourselves; read on for some ideas…
But first, what exactly do we mean by spiritual health?
Spiritual health, well-being, or wellness is simply our feeling of connectedness to something greater than ourselves—whether that be god or the universe, or just the greater good of our family, friends, and wider community.
Spiritual well-being can be connected to religion or a particular belief system, but it doesn’t need to be. Even the most practical and science-grounded among us can find spiritual significance in our existence.
“We are all connected; To each other, biologically. To the earth, chemically. To the rest of the universe, atomically.” ~ Neil DeGrasse Tyson
It’s really an acknowledgment of our interconnectedness and search for deeper meaning in life, and it brings many benefits—not just to our physical health.
From better mental health, more compassionate and fulfilling relationships, to a deeper sense of inner peace, spiritual well-being underpins overall well-being.
7 Simple Tools we can all use for Better Spiritual Health:
1. Practice acceptance
Lately, it seems like life’s lemon tree is in overdrive, right? Global pandemic and all the other juicy lemons of 2020 aside, personal adversity is a part of being human.
Learning to welcome our struggles as if we had chosen them can be a complete game changer when it comes to our spiritual well-being. Yes, even trauma, loss, grief…our greatest growth often begins in our darkest hours.
As Ekhart Tolle says, “Accept—then act. Whatever the present moment contains, accept it as if you had chosen it. Always work with it, not against it. Make it your friend and ally, not your enemy. This will miraculously transform your whole life.”
It’s also worth asking yourself what you might be unconsciously doing to choose certain things in your life. For example, if you feel like you’re repeating the same toxic patterns in your relationships or at work, it might be a good idea to explore why.
2. Slow down
Slow is the fastest way to Deep. If we want to get in touch with the depths of our soul, we have to make time and space for it, and the busier we are the more we need to slow down.
This could mean making a date with yourself to Just. Not. Do. Anything. It could mean drinking your coffee quietly without scrolling your newsfeed in the morning, exploring a creative outlet like painting, or diving into psychic or spiritual pursuits.
Our souls need care just like our bodies do. Even if we don’t think we have the time, we can leave our desks to go out and sit in the park at lunchtime, or listen to some classical music while we cook instead of watching Youtube. As we slow down more and make other small changes, we’ll develop more trust in our ability to show up for ourselves—an irreplaceable ingredient in any spiritual well-being recipe.
If you do nothing else on this list except, you’ll have given your spiritual health the greatest gift if you do this. Meditation is one of the oldest and most scientifically proven tools for deeper connection, presence, and not only spiritual but overall well-being.
Just five minutes a day can make more difference than you might imagine. And all you need to meditate is your breath. You can even do it whilst walking or cooking. If you think of meditation like brushing your teeth for your mind and soul, it’s easier to make it a daily habit. And once you start, you’ll quickly feel that mental and spiritual plaque start to build up when you don’t do it!
Elephant has a wealth of resources to help you get started, like the 2-Minute Meditation for Crazy-Busy People.
4. Find balance
This one can be tricky. Balance in the spiritual sense means having the ability to go with the flow as well as actively changing the course of events. It’s about finding an equilibrium between the two, surrendering and taking action, while maintaining a sense of optimism and trust in the universe…or the intelligence of life, however you look at it.
It’s knowing when to take a step back and wait, and when to move forward and act. It’s often difficult to see ourselves clearly in this regard, so it can be helpful to ask close family or friends what they think. Which brings us to our next piece of advice: getting help.
5. Get spiritual guidance from an expert
Asking for help is power. Self-reliance can be self-limiting. There might be better options out there, and other people who can hold new mirrors up for us to get to know ourselves better.
Even the most spiritually developed and healthy among us needs guidance and advice from time to time. It’s part of being human.
Sometimes calling a close friend is just what we need. Other times, we may want to talk to someone who has more expertise in the psychic or deep spiritual realm. Kasamba’s advisors are experienced in working with people from all walks of life and can help with any life area, including spiritual well-being.
6. Reconnect with Mother Nature
Practices like forest bathing and earthing are dedicated to tapping into this life force directly. But you don’t have to go full wild man or woman to fill your spiritual cup with the life-giving power of nature. Just that lunch break in the park, an afternoon walk along a forest trail, or a little time spent in your garden if you have one can help you to reconnect.
Even the most urban dwellers among us, without so much as a balcony to arrange a few pot plants on, can reconnect with Mother Nature in whatever small, indoor space we have. One of our favorite sources of inspiration here at Elephant is urban homesteader, Summer Rayne Oakes.
7. Practice abundance
Uh-huh, it’s a practice—one we can get better at by both giving and receiving. Giving to others brings us back to our feelings of interconnectedness, which is essentially what spiritual well-being is, right?
And right now, we have more opportunities than ever to practice that. Reach out to an elderly neighbor, donate to a food bank, volunteer at your favorite charity, buy some dog food for a local animal shelter…whatever it may be that you feel inspired to do, do it! Your heart will leap for joy; I guarantee it.
Ironically, receiving can often be harder to practice than giving. Maybe because it requires us to soften and get vulnerable. If we can learn to trust that there is more than enough of all the good things in the universe to go around, and remind ourselves that we deserve all this goodness, we can tap into a flow of abundance we never dreamed possible.
Set an intention today to show up for your spiritual well-being, even when things are difficult. Work on tolerating adversity, not to suffer needlessly, but to understand the situation better, so you can be empowered to harness it for good. All difficult people, situations, and feelings can be your friend and teacher if you give them the opportunity.
To create a spiritually healthy future for yourself, be open to receiving help and support—they are just different forms of love, after all.