Spiritual practice won’t stop life from happening…but
Just because you meditate doesn’t mean you’re never going to care what people think – because the truth is, we do care. Doing yoga doesn’t necessarily make a divorce less brutal—because divorce is rough no matter which way you slice it. And your prayers might not make an illness less intense – because physical burdens are well, burdensome.
For a lot of us self-helpers, we wonder: If I’m doing all this spiritual work, why does shit keep hitting the fan?
It usually goes something like this: “I’ve worked really hard to clear my emotions around it, but I still feel upset”; or “I’ve been setting my abundance intentions every day, but I’m still stressed out about money”; or “I totally opened up my heart in that weekend workshop, but my relationship still sucks.”
I’m sorry to say this, but your spiritual practice won’t stop life from happening. It does not make you a super human. Sorry to burst your spiritual cloud, but here’s the truth:
Mary Poppins isn’t flying in on an umbrella to save you with a spoon full of sugar. Shitty things, crazy people, circumstances, emotions, health crises and life will happen, and it takes work to stay afloat.
But what spiritual practice does do: It helps you handle life coming at you.
By being devoted to your spiritual practice, your spiritual journey, whatever you want to call it for yourself—you will be more able to choose your responses to the things you can’t prevent or maybe didn’t see coming. When things are piling up, when people are coming at you, when life gets weird or your heart is in pieces…. You’ll be more capable of riding the waves in your life.
When your ship is sinking, you’ll be clear enough to start paddling, or find the help you need to say afloat. Your internal compass will be working, and you’ll be guided to a resolution faster than if you had not been doing the spiritual work. It might seem difficult, but you may be averting a way worse outcome.
I’m also a firm believer that if things are rising in your life, it is a good time to pause and look at where you may have missed some legwork. As much as we would like to externalize everything coming at us, we have to ask ourselves the critical questions:
What did I miss
Where did I ignore the signals?
Where could I have been more proactive?
Am I asking for help, or am I doing it alone?
How can I make this easier?
By taking accountability for your part in the equation, you can avoid making the situation worse or repeating it in the future (to the best of your ability at least!) I think we tend to think that spirituality is fluffy and easy, but it takes a lot of work to be accountable for your life.
You can still struggle when you’re being masterful. We have things that we will need to deal with throughout our lives, and that doesn’t necessarily mean your spiritual practice isn’t working. Tragedies strike, life hits and heals each and every one of us. I don’t believe we came here to this Earth to become “non-human.” I believe we are here as spiritual beings to have a human experience. And that means doing the best we can with what we’ve got.
It means getting creative.
So whatever wave you’re currently riding, lean into your spiritual practice and ask the universe for guidance.
I believe you will find it.