What brings you true refreshment and renewal?
With a new year upon us, I want to take a moment to talk about a concept that I have been learning about over the past few years. Soul Care. What is it and why is it important?
My definition of soul care is when you intentionally care for your whole person: mind, body, spirit, all together. It is a paradigm shift to viewing all of your life as interconnected and sacred; not separated into work, finances, emotions, mental, spiritual. There is a difference between self care and soul care. Self care is something that you can plan, manage and take care of yourself. For example: setting some goals, making healthy boundaries in relationships, going to bed early, working out etc… Soul care involves the spiritual realm. This is where the energy shifts. You are not necessarily in charge. God is. Or however you may view it… some say The Divine. The Universe. To me it is God but I believe you can experience your spirituality in your own tradition and faith journey. Soul care is definitely having an intangible focus as a grounding value on how you want to do life.
When looking at soul care, first ask yourself - What brings me true recovery, refreshment and renewal? Not binge watching Netflix and zoning out with a couple glasses of wine. What truly brings me peace?
Here are some things to reflect on: (grab a journal!)
First ask yourself: how do I experience spirituality? God?
Where do you feel most connected or disconnected?
Where do you find yourself thriving or surviving?
Where do you feel more freedom or more hurried?
Do you know your limits?
Are you honest about exhaustion and feeling drained?
What energizes you?
What refreshes your spirit? Your soul?
How does your Faith inform your decisions about soul care?
It is important to engage regularly with Soul Care. It is setting an intentional practice of integrating all aspects of the human experience. Looking at your nonmaterial life and recognizing that each and every aspect of who we are needs care. It is not easy to practice soul care. First, we must create the space for our souls to thrive. To create space means to give attention, time and care to our soul care.
Here are some ideas:
Take a walk or a hike (or anywhere in nature) and practice mindfulness - intentionally focusing on the 5 senses and the here and now. Invite God into this space and see what He may show you.
Take 5 minutes of quiet to connect with yourself and ask “Where did I experience God today? Where did I not experience God today?” Just reflect on this without judgement.
Check out these apps to help: Soul Space, Pause, Centering Prayer, Lectio 365, WhispersfromGod, or any meditation app
Take a Soul Care Retreat, half or full day
Find a Spiritual Director
Find a Therapist who can integrate spirituality into your sessions
Check out my podcast, Faith Fringes and the episode on Soul Care https://faithfringes.com/episode32/
I also offer a free 8 week email course to engage more on this along with a free Spiritual Reflections Workbook https://faithfringes.com/spiritual-reflections-course/