Hello again to all returning readers and welcome to those who are reading for the first time! This is the official blog for Life & Wellness Counseling and Consulting and we are glad that you’re here.
Spiritual Health is our focus today, one of the 5 Facets of Health that was introduced in an earlier blog post. We will discuss the remaining 2 facets in the coming weeks so be sure to check-in with us weekly because life is beautiful!
Some people have a tendency to believe that spiritual health is about traditional organized religion. While an individual’s spiritual health can include religion, the concept focuses more on the person. An individual’s spiritual health refers to the extent to which we allow our beliefs, values, and principals to influence our perception of life’s meaning and our purpose in life. Our human nature urges us to make sense of things that we cannot explain or control and being spiritually healthy can help us to find comfort in a chaotic environment where we’re surrounded by uncontrollable factors. Let’s look at scenario where spiritual health might be tested:
You overhear a co-worker, one you are not particularly fond of and have had disagreements with in the past, speaking negatively to a supervisor during a confidential conversation about another co-worker, one who is a close friend of yours.
Contrary to popular belief, therapy is not the nemesis of spirituality. When we use the term spirituality, we’re referring to the connectedness of our inner thoughts, ideas, emotions, and opinions to a divine entity or higher power outside of ourselves. Therapists encourage clients to explore and acknowledge these sectors of humanity in order to define themselves. For example, if you experienced a form recent loss or traumatic incident, you may ask yourself questions like “Why did this happen to me?”, “How am I going to get through this?”, or “What’s the point in living?”… all questions that you direct to an omnipotent being outside of yourself and also, all questions that you would explore with your therapist. Let’s return to our scenario and look at a few more details:
The information your co-worker is telling the supervisor about your friend could cause her to meet sever disciplinary action such as garnished wages, unpaid suspension, or even termination.
Recent studies suggest that people who live in harsh environments are more likely to live by a stricter moral code and believe in a higher power. This phenomenon is similar for the state of our spiritual health. When things and going well and we feel confident and in control, we are more likely to attribute this type of synchronization in our lives to ourselves and our own behaviors. When we feel upset, inadequate, or unbalanced, we’re more likely to attribute those feelings to the actions and behaviors of others, a particular situation, or the environment. A significant aspect of being spiritually healthy is acknowledging what we control and then holding ourselves accountable for those things. Let’s have another look at our scenario:
As you stand paralyzed by what you’re hearing, you contemplate the validity of what your co-worker is saying about your friend. You know that your friend has been experiencing difficult times with her family, mental health, and romantic relationship but you are not sure if what your co-worker is saying is true or not.
The path to spiritual wellness may involve meditation, prayer, affirmations, or specific spiritual practices that support your connection to a higher power or belief system in
order to increase your self-confidence, assertive communication, and happiness, and fulfillment. Maintaining a positive sense of spiritual health can be especially difficult because much of it relies heavily on trusting things (1) we cannot see, (2) may leave us in the minority, and (3) have no scientific proof or support.
Do your values guide your decisions and actions? Are you open and accepting of perspectives that differ from yours? Do you hold yourself accountable for your behaviors? Are you confident in expressing your beliefs and opinions? If you’ve answered “no” to any of these questions, these are signs that you may be spiritually unhealthy.
Life & Wellness offers 5 ways to improve your spiritual health:
-Look for the “good” in every situation. Having a positive outlook will help you to be more appreciative of the things you experience regardless of how they impact your life.
Be slow to judge and open-minded
-We learn so much from others and when we remain open to learning new things, we foster spiritual growth.
Have a good relationship with yourself
-Talk to yourself throughout the day. Uplift yourself with positive sayings, reward accomplishments, and validate your own ideas and opinions.
Own your decisions
-Be a person of your word and let the decisions you make reflect your true feelings.
Spend time talking to a higher power
-When we tune out the hustle and bustle of everyday life, we allow ourselves to focus on our inner strength and gain enlightenment. Guidance and balance is an integral part of spiritual wellness.
So let us return to the scenario we’ve been examining throughout the reading.
Your supervisor notices you standing near the door and invites you in to ask your opinion. This supervisor is well-respected in the company and agreeing with his accusations about your friend could mean recommendations from him and forward movement in the company. However, disagreeing with him could mean that you have a difficult time and unfair treatment if you remain with the company.
Keeping in mind your spiritual health, leave us a post describing how you would respond to this situation in real life.