“I try to keep myself in a very fit mental and spiritual condition, and I take great care to do that on a daily basis.”
Spirituality is many things – a search for sacred meaning in life, a desire for connectedness, and a transcendence of the self. Religions, personal practices, community groups, and activities may all lead to a more sacred experience of life.
Purpose, meaning, and direction in life are all linked to wellbeing. These are some of the many benefits of having a spiritual connection to something greater than ourselves. It can give us hope and reassurance in times of change, crisis, and need.
When it comes to your own spirituality, it is important that you are free to believe what you wish. Happiness and satisfaction with life differ from person to person. If there is something religious or mystical you are doing – like prayers or affirmations – that helps your mental health and doesn’t hurt anyone, keep doing it.
As well as religions, some ancient practices such as yoga, tai chi, meditation, martial arts, and Celtic traditions all have strongly spiritual elements to them. Spirituality can be found in anything: painting, music, gardening, healing, or cooking, for instance. Wherever you find it, it can have a positive impact on your wellbeing.
A closer look
One third of Australians say spirituality is their life's guiding principle
However, only 30% of those consider their spirituality related to an organised religion. This implies there could be a marked difference in spirituality and religion for Australians. 10% of Australians take part in religious activities daily, and 14% of households do weekly. (Source)
Spirituality is now more embraced by modern psychiatry and medicine
In the past, spirituality has been considered more the cause of mental illness rather than a solution, in the world of science. This attitude has changed in recent times; spirituality is now viewed positively in psychiatry and in some areas of psychology. In the wellness therapy professions, spirituality has become very aligned to mental health and wellbeing. (Source)
Spiritual beliefs and practices are not an exact indicator of improved mental health
Mental health outcomes of spiritual and religious beliefs can be positive or neutral, or they can add distress. What matters is how a person is being spiritual or religious. The spiritual worldview of a person guides their attitudes and behaviours in areas of their life such as relationships, work, and how they regard others. (Source)
You might find online and phone-based mental health resources helpful. Some suggestions are below. You can find more with our Search tool (opens in a new tab).