You’ve likely recently heard about the importance of self-care to keep yourself balanced, thriving and fulfilled. It’s all about being aware of what you need and nurturing yourself. From retreats, to mindful eating, to journal writing, to meditation, we all are trying to find the most effective self-care solutions that give us a sense of peace and respite. Yet, the one often-overlooked and profound act of self care is…prayer.
But, you may wonder, isn’t prayer for those times of dire need and crisis, after all actions have been exhausted, when the only thing left is prayer?
Or, isn’t prayer exclusively for those who identify with a religion, and maybe that’s not you, or is definitely not you?
As a spiritual practitioner, I pray with people of all walks of life and religious beliefs. And I know that absolutely anyone can enjoy great benefit from praying.
A prayer can be as simple as saying, “Help me…guide me…direct me…hold me…enable me to be my best version of myself today. Amen,” or if you don’t want to use words, just allow one moment to close your eyes, place your hands on your heart and take a breath in the awareness that you are connected to Love.
You don’t need to have a certainty about what you are praying to or even for, just become willing to receive support and say a few words in honor of the mystery of life and love and see if you feel better. Whether you pray in the morning or at night before you close your eyes, allow yourself to be open.
I invite you to take a glimpse into how prayer can have a profound effect on your life. When we care for ourselves through prayer,
- We enter a state of self-acceptance. We become more of a friend and compassionate observer of ourselves, rather than enemy and judge. Prayer has a mysterious benefit of making us more forgiving. We are able to give up ‘being so hard on ourselves’ and we are willing to see that we, too, are human and just doing our best.
- We accept we are not perfect, that we are in need of guidance and support.This invites us to make peace with our vulnerability out of which we become more willing to receive support. We are acknowledging our needs which is a courageous act of self-esteem.
- We open our hearts to the support of the unseen Universe. We open to the mysterious power that breathes our breath and beats in our hearts. We soften toward forgiveness, compassion and mercy. We become willing to allow our painful perspectives to be healed.
- We affirm our connection to a greater something. We gain a deeper awareness of our interdependence with the world around us. And when we pray for others, we feel a closeness to those we pray for.
In our fast-paced lifestyles during this digital age, we’re all looking for ways to soothe and nurture ourselves and disconnect from the stress of our lives. By including prayer as a vital part of self care, we are making ourselves available for lasting, soul-nourishing and heart-opening benefits.
So pour yourself a cup of tea, close your eyes, say a prayer, and show yourself some love.