In my article, How I Approach Practical Spirituality [a starting place], I communicate the need for body and mind to be cared for in order to thrive spiritually.
But, how does that look practically?
Again, there is no exact method, but here are 3 practices that surface when I process thriving spiritually through the framework of care for body and mind.
Sleep — as obvious as this sounds, if I’m not getting enough sleep, then I’m not thriving physically… in other words, the vehicle I’ve been given by God to house my spirit and to navigate life on this planet is out of gas and will not propel me anywhere. How’s this for practical? -> I own a fitbit watch that keeps track of how much I sleep at night. It tracks good sleep, restless sleep, and intermittent waking during the night. After using it for several months, I found that if I’m not averaging somewhere in between 7–7.75 hours of sleep a night, I’m immediately taken out of the thriving category and tossed back into the out of gas and propelled nowhere category.
Headspace [margin of the mind] — When I’m overwhelmed with work, projects, or new ideas for work or projects, it can be easy for me to become distracted during times that I do have carved out for meditation, prayer, and reading scripture [practices that help me cultivate a posture toward listening to God]. When I find that my mind doesn’t have room for it all [and it doesn’t take much], I cling to my bullet journal as a lifeline [I just make my own from the steps provided on their website]. In it, I have a calendar of my productive work and include little actionable steps for each project that allow me to focus on small anxiety free steps. In the back of my bullet journal, I also keep a section for notes and ideas that I can come back to when I have time blocked off to process new ideas or thoughts. As my mind begins to clutter, I simply jot ideas down and release them from my mind — especially effective at night when I’m trying to wind down and get to sleep.
Downtime [margin of the calendar] — When our family finds that we are too busy during the evenings, we get out the calendar and look to the coming month and book evening after evening with what we call the no fly zone. These are evenings that we are committed to nothing. We try to make a habit of having two no fly zone boxes each week. This doesn’t mean we have to sit quietly on these evenings, but just means we can do whatever sounds fun to our family on those nights. You may be way better at this than we are, so you may not need the boxes, but this has been SO clutch for us.
And that’s it! Just a quick group of practices that first come to mind when I think about being intentional in caring for body and mind create internal environment for the spirit to thrive. As always, I’d love to hear your thoughts and process. Feel free to leave a comment in the comment section so that all can benefit from our continued conversation!
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