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The "S" Factor

By Karen Vally on 10 Dec 2021

I have been so encouraged by the increase in the number of guest speakers who unashamedly refer to their spiritual lives while addressing their audiences. One even mentioned, that during her summit of Kilamanjaro, she got down on her knees to pray for the strength to persevere. Something happens inside of me when someone shares a deeply personal and vulnerable moment. I feel connected. It confirms my core belief that we are all connected.

What are the benefits of having a spiritual life? A spiritual practice can take a variety of forms: prayer; mindfulness; meditation; journaling; walking; it could be linked to a church; a temple; a synagogue; it could be finding comfort through a personal relationship with a Higher Power; a connection through art or being in nature. 

Research has confirmed that it provides us with a sense of direction and purpose and greatly enhances our health and well-being. It has been known to strengthen our immune systems, lower blood pressure and reduce the risk of disease. It reduces anxiety and depression and enables us to withstand the negative effects of stress. Having a spiritual life, can also help to combat loneliness.

Spiritual people tend to display a deep sense of gratitude, optimism and positivity. They show generosity, kindness and compassion towards others. They strive to become better human beings by spending time on their personal growth and development.

Having a spiritual life sharpens our awareness and opens our hearts and our minds to such an extent, that we begin to see things differently. A spiritual life can be a powerful source of energy and vitality. It enables us to enjoy and appreciate the simple things in life and to see and understand, the bigger picture. When we engage in spiritual practices, they often accelerate our physical, mental and emotional healing and we tend to enjoy a better quality of sleep. We open the door to more exciting experiences. As our inner wisdom grows, we feel more motivated to say yes to life and no when it's appropriate.

When we acknowledge our bodies as our temples, we are more likely to prioritize an all-encompassing approach to our well-ness. Leading a spiritual life, enables us to grow our resilience and to realize that everything happens for a reason. When we accept this, learn the lesson and adapt accordingly, life begins to flow and we move on. 

As a spiritual person, we are encouraged to cultivate meaningful relationships and to exercise discernment in our decision making. Very often, spirituality changes our priorities and our habits because our intuition grows and our inner wisdom deepens. We feel the benefits of paying close attention to the present moment and finding happiness in it.

 "When you move with life, rather than against it, this decreases resistance and all the elements in your mind, body and spirit can exist in harmony." It may take a while to feel the positive effects of leading a spiritual life, but the effects are usually long-lasting.

"It's not what people believe in, but whether they (have) a daily practice that (makes) the difference...When you are in deep prayer or meditation, your fight-or-flight response goes off and your rest-and-repair turns on. This allows your immune system to supercharge your whole body and is incredibly healing, whether you're under stress or have an actual illness or are trying to prevent illness or stress."

"When everything is moving and shifting, the only way to counteract chaos, is stillness. When the surface is wavy, dive deeper for quieter waters."


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