“The goal of spiritual practice is full recovery, and the only thing you need to recover from is a fractured sense of self.” – Marianne Williamson
It’s especially easy to feel like you need to recover from a fractured sense of self when you are a mom who has lost more and more of herself to motherhood and managing the countless demands and needs of others.
I mean you have a very demanding job as a mother not to mention the host of other responsibilities you have whether you work in or outside the home. Life in general requires a significant amount of mental, emotional, and physical stamina. But I also believe to get through the stresses of life as a busy mom and to thrive you need to lay a foundation for yourself, a spiritual foundation, which starts with incorporating a spiritual practice into your life.
I know for me I would not have survived or be where I am if I did not have a spiritual well to draw from to fill me up and make me whole during life’s most challenging times. I don’t have a rigid spiritual practice that I follow every day but I do have a foundation of spiritual wisdom that I have built up over years of seeking and studying divine principles and spiritual truth and I integrate spiritual practices into my life in ways that naturally work for me.
Before I go any further let me explain how I define a spiritual practice.
A spiritual practice for me is much like a self-care practice in that it grounds you in an energy you can draw from to keep going and manage life as life comes at you. A spiritual practice can be acts, rituals or habits that ground and connect you to your core, your center and connects you to Spirit or what I often refer to as the Universe.
Connecting to your center and Spirit gives you access to your flow and offers guidance that helps you navigate life with greater ease.
Think of a spiritual practice as a way to fill your inner well with the fuel you need to manage the stresses, demands and challenges of motherhood and life in general.
If you pray, meditate, practice yoga, chant, take nature walks, read or listen to inspiring messages these are all examples of spiritual practice.
Many people go to church to receive the message of a minister as part of their weekly practice. This also allows them to fellowship with like-spirited people who are seeking truth, comfort, and inspiration that refuels them for the week ahead. The music alone at many churches is inspiration enough to center you. Though some of you may find going to church to be an essential component of your practice, know that you don’t have to go to church to be considered spiritual or spiritually connected. It is just one of many ways one can practice their truth and find guidance.
This isn’t about having this rigid thing you do daily or weekly. It’s about doing whatever feels right and authentic for you that you can realistically practice on a fairly consistent basis.
But it also doesn’t have to be one thing. You can mix it up and do what works for you when and where you feel moved to connect to Spirit, Divine Energy, the Universe, whatever you choose to call the higher power working in and through your life.
You may consider studying the wisdom of spiritual teachers who offer messages that resonate with you as part of your practice. Most of these teachers have books and websites that you can read for daily insights and inspiration. At one point I was reading Mark Nepo’s inspirational daybook, The Book of Awakening each day as part of my spiritual practice. As Mark suggests in his introduction his book is meant to help you bring your inner and outer life more closely together. To be used as a tool to help you know and use your heart, to be made more whole.
This is exactly what a spiritual practice helps you do – it helps you make your fractured self more whole.
Another spiritual practice is to tap into the transformative power and high frequency of nature. Communing with nature – the trees, flowers, birds and bees all connect us to a Universal power, a source of energy that we are all a part of and can draw from when we pay full attention to the beauty and miracle of nature.
This may sound paradoxical given my opening statement but mothering is a spiritual practice.
As I write this I am also reminded that caring for children can be an ongoing spiritual practice that teaches the lesson of unconditional love and infinite patience. My youngest makes it her full time job to distract me and keep me from writing. This turns out to be a good thing despite my resistance because it forces me to slow down and not rush to write a post just to get it done. I stop to play with her between edits and she laughs and hugs me, giving me the inspiration and encouragement I need. I continue on when she gives me a minute to do so and somehow my writing is better and more thoughtful.
I do believe children really are placed in our lives to bring us closer to our inner being, our divine self so that we can bring more compassion and love to all we do. Let your children show you how to slow down, be present, and cherish the sweetness of life. Let them soften you. Let them show you what really matters.
And finally, it can all be spiritual practice.
Everything we do can be made into a spiritual practice by simply bringing our heart and soul into it and paying full attention to the task at hand. The take away for today is that spiritual practice comes in many forms but remember it doesn’t have to be rigid, time consuming or elaborate.
If you don’t already have a consistent spiritual practice, just start with something small. Simply be still for five minutes each day and watch your life transform. Spirit will speak to you whenever and however you let it in and it will guide your way. It will keep you sane (most days). And we all know that a successful day for us crazy, busy moms is one in which the kids are safe and happy and we stay sane throughout it.
And since “Lord, Jesus, please help me! These kids are driving me crazy!” is a regular statement I say to myself, I clearly need to increase my own spiritual practice.
May the Force be with you and me.
If you would like to learn more about having a spiritual practice I found this website, Spirituality & Practice. I haven’t thoroughly reviewed it but on first glance it seems to be filled with a wealth of resources and practices you can adopt based on what’s right for you.
I want to hear from you. What is your spiritual practice that helps you stay grounded and centered? Please share your comments and insights below.
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If you are looking for support as an overwhelmed mom who can barely find time to shower much less commit to a daily spiritual or self-care practice I’d love to work with you and help you create more time and space for yourself. Feel free to inquire about a complimentary session.