Spirituality is often referred to as a broad concept that involves our search for meaning, our connection to something bigger, our beliefs, our quest for happiness, and our sense of purpose. It is considered broad because spirituality is an individual journey and experience—no one definition suffices for everyone’s spirituality or understanding of it.
This is why no matter how many books or journals you read, you still have to introspect to discover what spirituality means to you. That is what this piece is about: Finding and connecting with your spiritual side.
One key to applying the lessons here is to get out of a self-centered way of thinking and to develop compassion and empathy. Advancements in technology and the digital space has, unfortunately, worked against spirituality.
How? In the old days, before all this technology, collaborating with people in person was part of everyone’s job. Children played outside with their peers, and there were almost no jobs where you didn’t have co-workers you interacted with daily. However, with technology and the rise of remote work and digital nomadism came the ability and infrastructure to work out of a laptop in your living room. The rise of games, streaming services, and premium television provided the infrastructure to keep children entertained all day without human interaction.
If spirituality is about connecting with something bigger than yourself (and to many it is), then technology has only made us inward-focused, and this works against our spirituality. Anyone who wants to connect with their spiritual side already has technology working against them and must first purge themselves of the limiting habits and effects of technology.
Blake Snow, in his book Log Off: How to Stay Connected After Disconnecting, gives some ways to purge negative digital habits. The gist of it is removing distractions, having a genuine reason for being online, and adding structure to your day.
Now we explore five ways to connect with your spiritual side and get on your spiritual journey.
Introspection is a deep reflection on the state of a person’s own thoughts and emotions. You carry out this deep reflection—which involves asking yourself questions that will reveal who you are and why you think and behave the way you do. If you have never paid much attention to spirituality, you need this to understand why you want to undertake this journey and what the destination looks like. Only then will the road to get there be revealed.
Many mistake meditation to mean sitting monk-style don top of a mounting chanting “Ohm”—this is mostly false. Meditation involves focusing on a particular subject, philosophy, or idea in order to increase your awareness, train your attention, and achieve mental and emotional clarity. No mountains are involved.
One key to meditating is having something to meditate on. This should be what you are learning. Study others who have gone through what you are about to undertake and learn from what they did. Ponder on what you can learn from it and how it applies to you and your journey. That is meditation.
You help ease your meditative process by ensuring you are alone and in a quiet place. You can also make some additions like scents and soft music to help stimulate the mind. If you choose to do this, you can use Advent candles to help set a tone.
Meditation involves practicing mindfulness, but you can and should practice mindfulness all the time. Practicing mindfulness involves paying attention to what you are doing presently and how it either aids or takes away from your spiritual growth. Mindfulness is not limited to spiritual growth, even business executives practice mindfulness.
Journaling in its simplest form is keeping track of your life through writing in a journal regularly. It reinforces your goals, provides a record that you can refer to when you feel weary or disillusioned, and encourages you by providing written evidence of your progress.
Spiritual growth is not a one-time, one-week, or one-year regimen. It is a continual journey with no end. You get better the more you get involved and practice.