For years I read a myriad of self-help books and sought enlightenment on everything from relationships to business, and parenting to procrastination. As a heartsick teen I found empathy and support from the book How to Survive the Loss of a Love. In my 20s I spent a few weekends immersed in the est training (don’t laugh). The Secret movie and related books taught me the law of attraction and the power of gratitude.
I’ve read books, attended workshops and watched webinars, presented by people who seemed to have their shit figured out. However, until recently I didn’t often discuss my interests unless it was with the person who had specifically pointed me in that direction.
Self-empowerment and the dogged pursuit of happiness was my little secret.
Who hasn’t been a little self-conscious when buying a radical diet book or listening to a podcast on love languages or seeking group consciousness in a drum circle? Self-help or self-improvement implies there’s something wrong or broken and we’re naturally reluctant to broadcast that.
This perspective shifted for me earlier this year when I fell in love with the latest book rec from a well-read friend. In You Are a Badass at Making Money, author and life coach Jen Sincero encourages the practice of self-realization, referring to it as the spiritual gym.
Rather than working out your glutes and abs, the idea is to stretch your potential; make the blood rise in your aspirations and intentions; do the work to get where you know you’re meant to be. This may look like a stack of Wayne Dyer books, or a workshop on financial freedom. It could be a deep dive with a therapist, or some conscious play time for your creative spirit. Your gym might even look suspiciously like a church or a temple.
The point is not to feel like you’re lacking as you self-help your way into being a happier person. The point is that we’re evolving, brilliant, interesting human beings with endless resources of tools and inspiration to aid us in being more of who we want to be. So give your soul a daily workout and don’t worry what anyone thinks.
A few of my favorite workouts include: • Meditation • Vision Boards • Mel Robbins’ Instagram • Coloring Books • Success Coaching • Listening to Rise Up by Andra Day • and Swing Sets
Tell me in the comments, what does your spiritual gym look like?
colouring in – definitely 🙂
walks in nature (thankfully I live walking distance from a beach), also reading. Reiki…
I like self-realisation as a description rather than self-help, for the reasons you give.