A spiritual practice is one that can help bring you to a state of inner peace and help you to stay in the present moment. It is a way for you to connect and maintain that connection to the love you have for yourself; and share that love with the people around you, humanity, and the Earth.
It is a way to move past your own ego and your thoughts, emotions, and patterns that keep you stagnant and unable to move forward with love.
Start at the beginning of the year with a “youthful” mind
The new year is a great time to start to develop a spiritual practice that becomes a habit, especially if you stick with it. The Taoist way is to start with a 21-day practice in order to start to make it a habit. Buddhism follows Buddha’s path who found enlightenment after 49 days of “practice” or deep contemplation. But eventually, according to Taoist Chi Gung, who created and followed a 100-day practice, you eventually want to lengthen your practice so that by the time you have been practicing for 100 days, this practice has become a part of your existence.
When you start the new year, usually you have a beginner’s mindset that is fresh, new, and pure. This means you tend to come from a place that is more open-minded and ready to tackle things with a sense of humility and readiness. This is the right mindset because every day is truly a gift for you to start practicing being in your spiritual existence.
Eleanor Roosevelt said, “today is the oldest you have ever been, and the youngest you will ever be again.” When you think about these words, you can apply this thinking to the beginning of the year. When you are thinking about starting your spiritual practice, you can think, today you are the youngest you will ever be this year again. If you are “young” you typically come with a more open and optimistic mindset that you can apply when considering sticking to a spiritual practice. It’s an empowering feeling that can help you to not approach your spiritual practice as an arduous chore or something that has to get done. Instead, it is an exploration of your own spirituality and a deepening of your connection with your true self.
Try not to approach your spiritual practice like you would a “new year’s resolution” either. The reason why resolutions usually fail after some time is that people tend to stop considering their resolution with a youth mindset. They don’t come from a place of exploration, or openness or feel empowered by what they are doing anymore. But, when you have this beginner’s mind, youth mind, you tend to want to go deeper in your spiritual practice and explore more because it genuinely interests and excites you.
Break your practice down
Usually when people consider developing a spiritual practice; they first think they need to practice every day, indefinitely, for at least an hour a day. This is too much for your brain to comprehend and apply. Instead, try a micro productivity approach where you break up your practice only to be 7 days, then 21 days, then another 21 days, and go from there.
Breaking up your practice into bite-size chunks reduces your propensity to procrastinate, or defer, and makes it much more approachable.
Also, create a daily time to which you are dedicating to practice. For example, the mornings and very late evenings are usually the best time to practice (Spiritual Hour: 3 am-5 am or 11 pm-1 am). There tend to be few competing interests and the time usually is peaceful, quiet, and dark so you can do nothing but commit to your practice. If these times are not available then wake up a little earlier or practice a little bit later, after work, and take some space for yourself.
The easier your practice can be to wrap your head around, the better it is to stick with it. Then, after you have consistently stayed with your practice for the first chunk of time, evaluate how it made you feel. Make adjustments that fit your schedule to ensure you are always holding yourself accountable to your practice.
Life doesn’t always move the same way. Making adjustments along the way makes it easier to maintain a practice that truly works for you throughout the year and beyond.
Apply the buddy system
Sometimes having a “buddy” or other people joining in a shared spiritual practice can hold you accountable to continue that practice. Some people have a lot of personal responsibility but most people do not.
During our Awaken Divine Light I course, I teach you how to strengthen your spiritual practice, and clear and activate your chakras. We meet for 21 days together for pre-training, on Zoom, to meditate so that you can start getting used to or re-expose yourself to a consistent spiritual practice. We have two hours of our main training where you will learn how to activate or reactivate your chakras to empower your self-healing journey. Then, we hold 21 days of post-training where you will learn to strengthen your spiritual practice and continue purifying your chakras. This course is meant to naturally hold us all accountable to each other and to ourselves because we tend to stop focusing on what we feel like doing and rather on what not doing the practice means for us when we have a natural state of gentle peer pressure.
Follow the Tao wisdom: principle, practice, and live it
“Principle, practice, and living” is one of the main, ancient Tao teachings that can help you to convert and adapt your spiritual practice into your daily life. The hardest part of sticking with your practice is actually adapting the principles to your daily life so that it becomes a part of you, rather than you going through the motions. But, it is through converting your practice to your consciousness throughout the day that helps you make it less of a practice, and just a part of your existence, where you continuously learn to grow your soul.
In order to covert your practice, start by thinking about the principles as the foundation of your practice. Consider what you are learning to do. An example of this is learning about the chakras, your body’s energy centers, and how to cleanse, connect and activate them. Having a great understanding of the principles of your practice can help you to see how they apply to your daily life.
In the chakra example, every day it is important to cleanse and align your chakras to bring new energy into your body and release behaviors and patterns that no longer serve you. Also, it allows you to maintain higher levels of consciousness when your chakras are cleansed and flowing with new energy. Understand that the principle of opening and activating your chakras every day is so that you can share the love you have within yourself with the rest of the world. Then, you can have a positive effect on your well-being and the well-being of others.
Next, in order to convert your practice, begin the day actually practicing and being consistent with that practice. Referring back to your chakras, dedicate yourself to cleansing and activating your chakras every day and bringing new Divine energy through them. That way, your practice becomes a natural part of your daily routine.
Finally, live your practice by bringing that awareness of your practice into every aspect of your life. Using the chakra example again, once you release old energy by activating your energy centers, you awaken your soul and divinity. In your daily life, you can start to share the unconditional love you have for yourself with the people around you, leading to brighter and lighter interactions. You can start to look at those interactions from other viewpoints that lead to more love and healing conversations and shared experiences. You will also be able to discover that you can heal yourself, or cope better in situations that may have been challenging before. Before reacting, you will start to ask yourself every day, “How can I share more healing, love, and light throughout my day?” You will start to make decisions and set intentions that align with your awakened state and create opportunities that align better with your soul.
Learn to develop or reignite your spiritual practice and awaken your spiritual senses. For more information check out our upcoming Awaken Divine Light Course. Also, please join us for an online meditation and prayer on January 1st at sunrise to Awaken Your Inner Light, an Annual Event. Feel the brightness of your brain connect with the sun’s natural light. We welcome the new year in with a beginner’s mind, in order to let go of burdens that no longer serve us. We will also be conducting 21 days of a manifestation meditation where we will be focusing on manifesting what our truest desires are within our soul in order to co-create more love, peace, and harmony for ourselves and the rest of the world. Start the year by creating a new vision that aligns with the brightest version of you. You are also welcome to participate in 365 days of prayer, where you connect to the radiant loving energy we send to you as our way to help you achieve your intentions for the upcoming year. Create the life that you want and start the year off bright, light, and aligned.