Updated: Mar 23
On a scale of 0 to 10, how healthy is your spiritual practice?
Taking care of your spiritual health should be a regular part of your daily routine. And no, your spiritual practice doesn’t have to be connected to a specific religion or ideology.
If you’re experiencing feelings of disconnect or sadness, now is an especially important time to focus on improving your spiritual health. Read on to learn more about what spiritual well-being is, why it is important, and how you can start improving it right away.
What is spiritual well-being?
Spiritual well-being refers to your view on the meaning and purpose of your life. Your spiritual well-being is impacted by many areas of your life, including your culture, community, and personal beliefs and values.
A key part to the idea of spiritual well-being is the concept of transcendence, where your mind travels beyond your physical world. It is usually connected to the goal of understanding the purpose of life, and how events throughout time support it.
Why is spiritual well-being important?
Spiritual well-being is important for our physical, mental, and emotional health, and it feeds into our search for purpose and fulfillment in our lives. In other words, spiritual well-being is the area of our health focused on answering questions on why we are here, and what we are meant to do in life.
If you look at Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs, spiritual values and motives become our main focus once our basic needs for survival are satisfied. And science has found psychological and evolutionary benefits to searching for (and identifying) the purpose and meaning of life.
In fact, in a scientific review of more than 300 articles and publications, Paloutzian and his colleagues reported a connection between higher spiritual well-being and improved mental and physical health. Participants in various studies reported better mental health such as experiencing lower feelings of stress, depression, and anxiety. There were reports of improved immune function, sleep quality, and resilience in dealing with health challenges.
Paloutzian and his colleagues concluded that the research suggests a person’s perception of life and their response to challenges is important to overall health or resilience.
How do you practice spiritual well-being?
With spiritual well-being such an important player in our overall health and wellness, we really should take our time to maintain our spiritual health. Here are simple ways you can do just that.
1. Morning Meditation
Instead of grabbing your phone to check your email or social media feed as soon as you wake up, start your days off with nourishment for your soul. You can use a variety of techniques, such as practicing breathing exercises or following along with a guided meditation audio track.
2. Daily Mindfulness
Practicing mindfulness is an effective way to still your mind so that you can focus on being present in the moment. Being more present helps you create deeper connections with the people around you and develop more appreciation for the beauty and good in your world — both of which are important for improving your spiritual well-being.
3. Gratitude Journaling
Journaling in and of itself is a powerful way to connect with your inner self. Gratitude journaling has the added benefit of improving your outlook by helping to create a sense of fulfillment and contentment with the good already present in your life.
Want a short routine to quickly start using these 3 techniques? Here’s a simple one you can follow. Start with a 5-minute morning meditation when you wake up, followed by 5 minutes of mindfulness in at least 1 part of your day, and then 5 minutes of gratitude journaling at night. And just like that, in 15 minutes a day you can start improving your health and well-being.
Now that you see how important spiritual well-being is to your health, how do you plan on improving your spiritual wellness practice today? Comment below and let us know!
Paloutzian, Raymond F.; Bufford, Rodger K.; and Wildman, Ashley J., "Spiritual Well-Being Scale: Mental and Physical Health Relationships (Chapter 48 of Oxford Textbook of Spirituality in Healthcare)" (2012). Faculty Publications - Grad School of Clinical Psychology. 289.