How the Practical Aspect of Spirituality can Help You Relieve Stress and Anxiety and Calm the Mind [Episode #716]
This week’s topic is: How the Practical Aspect of Spirituality can Help You Relieve Stress and Anxiety and Calm the Mind
In a greater sense, we are all here trying to feel good in our lives. Feeling good in the way that we talk about it is really about this deeper, grounded, sustainable place of self connection that guides us and how to best nurture ourselves. How we move through life, how we eat, how we conduct ourselves, how we make decisions, how we take care of our bodies, many different aspects.
The spiritual cornerstone is one of the things we want to explore today. In a practical sense, this helps us day to day and managing stress and anxiety, which is propelled and expanded in our life from circular thought patterns, this egoic world and deluge of thoughts. Spirituality can really help ground our bodies and our stress hormones in very real practical ways that will help us harvest enormous benefits and our day to day experience. It’s not just these elevated feelings when we’re sitting in meditation, but really beyond that and across our entire lives.
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Note: The following is the output of transcribing from an audio recording. Although the transcription is largely accurate, in some cases it is incomplete or inaccurate. This is due to inaudible passages or transcription errors. It is posted as an aid, but should not be treated as an authoritative record.
Namaste love and welcome back to our Thursday, Q&A podcast where our topic this week is How the Practical Aspect of Spirituality can Help You Relieve Stress and Anxiety and Calm the Mind. So in a greater sense, we are all here trying to feel good in our lives. The title of our show of our podcast and feeling good in the way that we talk about it is really about this deeper, grounded, sustainable place of self connection that guides us and how to best nurture our St ourselves, how we move through life, how we eat, how we conduct ourselves, how we make decisions, how we take care of our bodies, many different aspects. And so one of the things, one of our cornerstones, the spiritual cornerstone, one of the things we wanna explore today is how in a practical sense, this helps us day to day and managing stress and anxiety, which is propelled and expanded in our life from circular thought patterns from just the, this egoic world, this deluge of thoughts, which will get into in just a moment and how spirituality can really help ground us, our bodies, our stress hormones in very real practical ways that will help us harvest enormous benefits and our day to day experience. So not just these elevated feelings when we’re sitting in meditation, but really beyond that and across our entire lives.
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Question around the topic of: How the Practical Aspect of Spirituality can Help You Relieve Stress and Anxiety and Calm the Mind: Kimberly I have tried so many things to help with anxiety- like essential oils and exercise. I’ve tried meditating too- but my mind wanders. What can I do?! Help!!
So let’s get into our show today, write straight in the practical aspect of spirituality to help us combat stress, anxiety, and just feel more calm and peaceful. So our question today comes from Stevie who lives in Virginia. So thank you so much.
My love for your question and sending you so much love out there to the beautiful state of Virginia, wherever you happen to be your question is Kimberly, I’ve tried so many things to help with anxiety like essential oils and exercise. I’ve tried meditating too, but my mind wanders, what can I do help? So Stevie, thank you again so much. We know we all know that anxiety is such a widespread concern and in many ways, most all of us have dipped in and out of nervousness, worry, overthinking the whole gamut, the whole range in which anxiety can exhibit varying levels of insomnia, indigestion. So many different ways. It comes through in our energy field. And of course it is very unsettling. It has such a disruptive effect on our bodies, our peace, our enjoyment of life, our ability to make decisions, our ability to enjoy the present moment, be with our families, countless things.
So it’s no wonder that most all of us are reaching for different aids. And again, there’s a wide range of that too, as we all know, from sleep aids to tinctures different ingredients, medicinal mushrooms, and, um, vibrating pillows and just a million different ways in which we’re just trying, we’re trying our best here to que this anxiety. So some of those modalities can be helpful and it can all layer on top like Stevie, you mentioned essential oils, there’s research around scent and how it does have a powerful effect on the mind. But I do not believe any one of these tangible items are really going to get us there in and of themself. So yes, we can incorporate essential oils and we can definitely exercise. And there is a fairly immediate effect of just working stress out of the body, but it’s not necessarily sustainable.
The stress, the feelings, the thoughts will come back. So we want to work with those modalities, but we also wanna work with the deep, sustainable anchor of spirituality. There’s a lot of research around this as well. And we’re gonna link to this in the show notes email@example.com in case you wanna check it out. Sometimes for some of us, the discerning mind seeing real research and studies can help us believe more. It can help us, um, can bridge that gap. And so if that’s, if you’re one of those people and science is supportive to you on your journey, please especially check out these show notes. So there’s different studies showing how spirituality is an important anchor for socio emotional adjustment. It has been found in research to shield adolescence against risky behavior, such as delinquency, substance abuse, sexual promiscuity, emotional problems, such as depression, anxiety, our focus here and suicide.
Other studies have shown that spirituality is significantly associated with indicators of subjective wellbeing, such as positive emotions, life satisfaction, so on social emotional adjustment. And it goes on to say that there is mounting evidence around spirituality contributing to more compassionate feelings and behaviors towards needy others, higher levels of civic engagement, social adjustment, and functioning. So in this last study, really talking about how we fit in with community and oneness and transcending feelings of separateness, which are part of anxiety, part of this egoic thinking. So the great yoga guru Paramahansa Yoon used this term superficial flux and what this means in yogic spiritual terms. Well, first of all, let me just back up for a moment, getting a little ahead of myself. We’re talking about spirituality. We’re not talking about religion. We’re talking about connecting to the, to the energy, identifying more with the energy inside of you, rather than the aging changing, shifting physical body, the surface you, what you’re out doing in the work world or whatever the doing part versus this real stable and powerful formless energy inside of you.
So spirituality is about connecting to the deeper parts of you, which we can define. We can conceptualize in different ways. We could say, it’s your soul. We could say it’s spirit individualized inside of you universe inside of you, whatever it is, but it’s this deeper connection. And so yoga Nanda talks about this idea of superficial flux, meaning that in this world, which we see with our physical eyes, just like we can look in the mirror and see what we think is us as the body, there is always change. There’s always shift and there’s this part of the world of illusion and delusion. He means that we are, we don’t what we see with our eyes is not all there is. So if we are always caught up in the flux of things, changing and moving, this is what anxiety is born of. It means that we are, we become fearful of change.
We become fearful of dying of aging of things, moving away from us or towards us or whatever it is. So we put too much of our energy and attention into superficial flux and how this manifests for humans specifically, he goes to talk about the impact of our energy and attention being really centered around a lot of the time. Let’s be honest here, memories and imaginings. So memories are the past. These images, these ideas, these thought patterns, which we may pull from the hippocampus or different parts of our brain, these image, these things that aren’t really real anymore. They just exist in our brain or it’s us that contrives and creates them from thoughts, but it isn’t really real. So the more we keep ruminating over the past, it is us that makes it real. And it’s us that keeps bringing in, it’s almost like we’re reliving trauma or we’re reimagining these events by consistently bringing them back in, back in through our memories and the memories of the past often inform our imaginings.
So we imagine situations, we play out scenarios and this is all future based. It’s not real, it’s not here yet. We all know that <laugh>, but this past and the future is really what creates anxiety. It creates this stress because we start to have more fear, energy built up inside of us. Well, what if this happens? And what if this plays out and really what do I do? <laugh>? And so we’re neither here nor there when we’re in the imaginings and the memories. And so the place where we can really be free of all of this is the stillness of now. So Yogananda talks about God as the stillness, the deep stillness in this now moment. And when we are able to really come into this stillness, and there’s so much research now around mindfulness being present of this moment and what that does and helping to correlates to reduced anxiety and stress.
So there’s some research around this as well. We are here and this deep anchored ness of the now just the beingness starts to really rise up. And so this rising up this angerness inside of us starts to replace more and more in a very practical way. This flitting of the mind, back and forth into nowhere land <laugh>. We can think about the past as, you know, consider it if we’re making a decision or we can consider different scenarios, but we don’t wanna live in the past in the future all the time. More and more, we want to sink into this deeper place of nowness. Nowness is where real safety lives, because when we are really here, which is what spirituality and the practices of sitting in meditation and filling your breath and the other tools and deeper forms of meditation, like Korea, Yogananada teaches.
When we are really here, we are able to rise to whatever comes our way. We are able to pivot. We are able to come with clarity and listening and softness and love and gentleness and come and harmonize with this. Now moment. Now this is the real point of power. It means we don’t have to sit in fear all the time, which is what anxiety is because instead we bring the power of the nowness knowing and trusting more and more God inside of us, our true self that whatever comes our way expected or unexpected, we will be able to handle because we are fully grounded in the stillness of this moment. What this means is that we have deeper acceptance for whatever arises. So this tunes into the Tao Te Ching by Lao Tzu, which is this beautiful treat is from thousands of years ago about finding this real peacefulness, the real power of just melding with the now, right?
So in, in spiritual sense, we train ourselves this monkey mind, that’s always jumping around. We train the monkey to be our friend to calm down. And so that we are more in touch with this real, just, you know, wordless power of stillness. We experience it as a truth, and then it starts to expand. So I can say in my own life, and I, you know, I really relate to this Stevie and I think a lot of us do as well, that there is a lot of fluctuation that happens when we sit to meditate. It can be really difficult. It can feel really challenging at first, but it is a practice we can learn just like we learn a scale, just like we learn to ride a bike. So now I’ve been meditating over 12, 13 years now, and it is so much easier. It is so much more profound.
And I’m not saying you have to wait that long. <laugh>, I’m just looking back on the arc of my own journey. You may notice with regularity that your meditation start to improve within a few days, and then it’s up and down. It’s a non-linear path, but I will say that it really does keep getting deeper and more incredible. So now it doesn’t feel like a chore for me to meditate. I want to go in there and there’s just this deeper piece. So we don’t have to worry and overthink so much. So practically speaking, being in the stillness more and more relieves the stress. It calms the mind because we don’t have to manage the outside world so much. We don’t have to worry about controlling things so much. Instead, we’re so anchored to the internal space. We know that the right decisions, the intuition will arise from inside of us.
We know that we listen and in this stillness, what arises is real guidance and real truth and deep peace. And we will, we will be able to deal with anything that comes our way. So there’s a real practical nature to this. We take this stillness more and more. The more we sit in meditation regularly morning and evening, and we take it into the day. We just start to live by these truths. And so I encourage you to check out our whole library of free guided meditations over mysolluna.com on our app. I encourage you to make this make room for it in your practice. It’s just 10 minutes or less, but to really experience, experience, spirituality and
Experience how beyond the temporary, yes, a essential oil treatment may help you feel a little peace in that moment, or, you know, whatever it is just knowing this 24 7 anchor. So near, so close it’s inside of you, that you can call on that you can breathe into that. You can always just take a pause from a stressful conversation or situation or email and connect to that. Anchor inside, practically speaking, it helps toque the stress hormones. It helps to calm the breath. It helps to calm the nervous system. So it is a tool that is always with you. So please check out our meditations as practical tools. Please check out the Solluna Circle as a supportive community to support you on your journey as well. We’ll leave information in the show notes and as always, let me know how I can continue to support you and please keep the questions coming. So I’ll be back here Monday for our next interview podcast to then take great care. Look forward to connecting more, so much, love, so much gratitude, Namaste.