Spirituality is a word that means different things for different people at different times in different cultures. In many literatures you will find spirituality described as a sense of purpose, a sense of connectedness to self and others, nature, “God”, some level of transcendence, or the sense that there is more to life than the material world. It helps people understand their interpretation of the meaning of life.
In the past two decades or so, researchers across a range of disciplines have started to explore and acknowledge the positive contribution spirituality can make to mental health. Therapists note that when people feel more in tune with their spirit, they feel more confident and more empowered. Research has shown how the integration of spiritual practices and therapy can contribute to better mental health. The benefits of spirituality in mental health are personal because every person will have a different experience. These tend to be expressions of spirituality that encourage personal empowerment, that affirm and embrace diversity and that promote the importance of emotions such as hope, forgiveness, empathy, compassion, joy, peace, and purpose.
Many people associate spirituality with religion. However, this is not always the case. Many times, the integration of spiritual awakening activities is considered a self-care practice to help a person improve their mental and emotional health. In a non-religious perspective, spirituality is focusing on the well-being of the mind, body, and spirit. This usually includes holistic activities such as yoga or meditation.
Josephina Encarnacion, Holistic Coach