Spirituality is a worldview that suggests there is more to life than what people experience on a sensory and physical level. It often involves religious traditions that focus on the belief in a higher form of intelligence or consciousness running the universe and a larger purpose for human existence. People may also describe themselves as spiritual without being religious. Spirituality often focuses on finding inspiration, reverence, awe, meaning and purpose in one’s life. It tends to come into focus during times of emotional stress, physical (and mental) illness, death, loss or grief.
A person’s spirituality can look like religion or it could be related to a practice of meditation, yoga, healing, psychic powers, Astrology and the paranormal. It can involve going to a church, synagogue or mosque. It can also include a daily practice of prayer, meditation or mindfulness, or it can be connected to nature and art. Increasingly, therapists are finding it helpful to work with patients on their spirituality. This can be done through a variety of tools including lifemaps in which patients depict their spiritual journey; genograms, in which they chart the role of spirituality over several generations of their family; and eco-maps, in which they explore their current relationship with the environment.
Spirituality requires practice, commitment and love for yourself. It can be beneficial for coping with anxiety, stress and depression and for developing hope and optimism in your life. It can also boost immune function and promote self-transcendent emotions, such as gratitude, self-compassion, awe and hope.