Sometimes when I am in a moment of quiet contemplation or meditation, I have the most inspired download of juicy ideas.
At the times when I am most desiring peace and for my mind to slow down its activities a little, I am flooded with insight.
I love that when I create some space to get still and silent, the Universe says
‘here you go honey-ponder this’!
Recently whilst settling into my meditation, I started thinking about the time a mama has for her spiritual practise and how the whole idea of this changes when raising little ones.
Life as a full time mama is busy with a capital B.
Gently and lovingly guiding a little soul is a beautiful yet often exhausting journey with many ebbs and flows.
To be always fully present, kind and compassionate can be a challenge regardless of what the moment presents.
To do this with my 3 year old when she is in the midst of a mini meltdown at the end of a long day forces me to draw on every spiritual practise I know to get us through the moment relatively unscathed, and, ideally, with me left feeling that I have honoured both our needs without stepping out of alignment with my own personal brand of parenting philosophy.
I have always believed that our children are our greatest teachers.
Our own private little gurus handing out life lessons one after the other, challenging us to be ‘in the now’, ‘let go’ and ‘move on’.
Desiring to be a present, devoted, empathic and gentle mama has compelled me to shine the light on my own ‘shit’ and deal with it pretty promptly.
Becoming a mama is a little like boot camp for your spiritual practise.
It’s also like fasting to release all you are holding onto that no longer serves your bigger parenting picture.
But how does one balance the life of mindful mama with spiritual devotee?
How can we find the space to deepen our practise if pockets of peace are few and far between?
Some of my biggest lessons arrived when I let go of the idea of what a spiritual ‘practise’ should look like, and instead embraced a more aligned approach to self-growth, deep connection and exploration.
One that honours where I am in life right now, and that doesn’t leave me feeling guilty for not ‘doing’ enough.
What does my practise look like these days?
Stolen moments of breath awareness when my little one is happily playing and time to sit in stillness and self-nurture on those days she decides to nap.
Gentle walks in nature in full presence and magical moments on my mat - no matter how brief.
Mindfulness during all moments, a daily gratitude practise, journaling and restful yoga when she goes to bed.
Simply being... showing up to what each moment has to offer and doing the best I can in that moment.
Buddha eloquently talks about the nature of impermanence and non-attachment.
That all things shift and change eventually.
If you were to pause for a moment to look within, where might you be clinging to your perceived idea of, or the actualisation of your practise right now?
My personal practise has evolved and changed over the years, and I know it will continue to look different as my daughter grows.
Being open to change and coming from a place of non-attachment allows me to ‘go WITH the flow’ as life lilts lovingly along.
Because really, what does the term ‘spiritual practise’ mean anyway?
Is it the time you spend on your yoga mat or meditation cushion each day?
Maybe it’s the space you allow daily to lovingly place offerings on your alter in devotion and connection to source.
It might be witnessing the sunrise every morning with gratitude resting in your heart.
We all have our own brand of spiritual practise, for the ways we connect to the divine are uniquely personal.
But what I have realised over the years is that the idea of a ‘spiritual practise’ as a side to life is an illusion.
Life IS the practise.
Each unfolding moment IS the practise
There is no separation.
Life becomes the canvas for the unfolding of all of it, messy and mashed together, not perfectly segmented into digestible bits.
Whether you are sitting in Lotus for an hour every day contemplating your navel or being completely and lovingly with your child through the evening witching hour-all is the practise.
And the practise TAKES practise, patience and dedication.
When we are finally able to let go of our attachments and move the practise ‘off’ the mat and into life, all unfolds and blossoms beautifully.
Being able to bring gentle mindfulness to the party in times of need, resting back into the breath in moments of pure overwhelm, or surrendering to the moment when you deeply desired it to be different.
This now IS your practise.
Mama or not, drawing on our practise moment to moment allows for more effortless flow in life and less suffering and struggle.
Life becomes a delightful dance of ease and joy.
So where, sweet soul, can you drop the ‘should’ of your practise, and rather start to look at your WHOLE life as a spiritual playground?
Do you resonate honey?
Have you given yourself a hard time for not rolling out the mat for hours each day or committing to a devoted meditation practise first thing every morning?
Cultivation and dedication ARE important, but more important is how you feel when you bring these practises into your life.
Is there flow…or rigidity?
I’d love to hear in the comments below what your experience has been so feel free to share.
Have a liberating week filled with freedom!