She is the silent whisper of our inner truth,
And a sacred flame that burns within.
She embodies our core, the unaltered truth of who we are,
a divine spark in the human form.
Her needs are as deep as the ocean’s heart,
For emotional flows and breaths, that part.
Yearning for love, unbound and wide,
And compassion’s embrace where true selves reside.
In moments of silence and in life’s loud art,
At your core, she is there, apart.
The untouched essence of your being so vast,
Your most authentic self, Your Soul.
The Call to Soulful Living: Why Soul Care is Essential
Diving into these words, we touch something deep within us. It’s like opening a door to a place we’ve always known but rarely visited. Here, we step beyond just taking care of our bodies and feelings; we start to feed our souls.
In a world where the noise of daily life often covers our inner voice, the importance of soul care becomes vital.
The Soul-Care Awakening: My Personal Journey
In the thick of the pandemic, as I poured my energy into supporting others through my private practice and my classes, I reached my own crisis point. The weight of collective anxiety and personal responsibility became overwhelming. Seeking relief, I paused to reset, immersing myself in the familiar rituals of self-care. I rested, took meditative walks, and deepened my Reiki and meditation practices. These efforts brought physical relief and some inner peace, yet something within remained unfulfilled—an emptiness that physical rest and mental relaxation could not touch.
Soul Journaling: A Conversation Within
It was in this quiet acknowledgment of my inner void that I turned inward, seeking guidance from my soul. I engaged in Soul Journaling, a process of asking a question followed by free writing to tap into the wisdom that lay beneath the surface. The message from my soul was unmistakable: it longed not for simple relaxation and stillness but for a space where intentional movement and music could flow freely. Since then, my daily practice has been enriched by intentional movement and music that touches my soul deeply. The rhythm and melodies became a language through which my soul could speak and heal.
As we peel back the layers of routine self-care, we often uncover spaces within us that remain unfilled, untouched by the typical wellness routines.
Reflecting on Life’s Transitions: The Soul’s Perspective
Reflecting back on the times when we felt a profound emptiness, it becomes clear that these were not just moments of solitude or silence but instances where we were disconnected from the very essence of our being—our soul.
Life transitions often trigger periods of disconnection. Consider the profound shift when one leaves a marriage or retirement, a meaningful change that modifies daily purpose and social engagement, leading to questions of self-worth and direction.
One of the women I mentor shared with me her meeting with this profound emptiness as she transitioned into the phase of an empty nester. She dealt with a loss of identity that extended far beyond the absence of daily caregiving; she felt invisible. The role she had cherished as a mother had shifted, leaving her to navigate the quiet of an empty home. In the aftermath, she embarked on a quest to rediscover herself, to find her own rhythm in this new, silent space that once buzzed with her children’s energy.
Another woman I mentor shared how leaving her marriage marked a pivotal point in her life. She described it as stepping into an echoing void where the partnership she had known became a silence filled with uncertainty. Her soul, once lifted by the presence and routine of a shared life, now felt adrift in emptiness. The separation was more than the end of a relationship; it was as if a part of her very essence had been hollowed out.
Now, looking back at your own life, can you identify those moments—a significant change, a transition, or a life challenge—that left you feeling hollow? Could it be that these were the times you were disconnected from your soul? How might intentional soul-care practices have filled those voids and fostered a reconnection with your authentic self?”
One of the women I mentor shared with me her encounter with this profound emptiness during two significant life junctures. As she transitioned into the phase of an empty nester, she grappled with a loss of identity that extended far beyond the absence of daily caregiving; she felt invisible. The role she had cherished as a mother had shifted, leaving her to navigate the quiet of an empty home. In the aftermath, she embarked on a quest to rediscover herself, to find her own rhythm in this new, silent space that once buzzed with her children’s energy.
Another woman I mentor conveyed how leaving her marriage marked a pivotal point in her life. She described it as stepping into an echoing void where the partnership she had known became a silence filled with uncertainty. Her soul, once buoyed by the presence and routine of a shared life, now felt adrift in emptiness. The severance was more than the end of a relationship; it was as if a part of her very essence had been hollowed out. In the solitude that followed, she faced the daunting task of filling the spaces that had been left bare of rekindling the sacred flame within that had dimmed in the shadow of her lost union.
Why Self-care and Soul-Care are NOT the same
Self-care and soul-care are two concepts that often overlap but stem from different approaches to well-being.
Self-care refers to the practices and activities we engage in on a regular basis to reduce stress and maintain and enhance our short- and long-term health and well-being.
Self-care is about taking care of the physical body, mental health, and emotional needs. It’s the kind of care that helps us stay functional and balanced in our day-to-day lives.
Examples of self-care include getting enough sleep, eating healthy foods, exercising, managing stress, and taking time for relaxing activities.
Soul-care, on the other hand, goes deeper into one’s inner life. It involves activities and practices that relate to one’s innermost values, beliefs, and sense of purpose.
It’s about nourishing the soul, attending to spiritual needs, and ensuring emotional and existential fulfillment.
While self-care tends to be more practical and physical, soul-care is more abstract and spiritual. However, both are crucial for a holistic approach to health. They support each other and are often integrated; for example, yoga can be considered both self-care (as physical exercise) and soul-care (as a spiritual practice).
In essence, self-care keeps us well-functioning, while soul-care makes our lives deeply meaningful.
Through years of talks with my clients and students, along with what I’ve learned on my own, I’ve put together the following list: essential soul-care practices for any woman who wants to nurture her soul deeply.
Thirteen Soul-Care Practices: Nurturing Your Deepest Self
- Contemplative Nature Walks: Walking in nature with the intention of connecting deeply with the earth and its rhythms, often in silence, to cultivate a sense of oneness with the natural world.
- Sacred Ritual Creation: Designing personal rituals to honor transitions, celebrate achievements, or acknowledge losses, thereby giving profound experiences a spiritual dimension.
- Creating a Personal Altar: Designing a sacred space in your home that serves as a focal point for spiritual practice. This altar can hold significant items such as symbols, artifacts, images, crystals, candles, or natural elements that resonate with your spiritual journey, serving as a daily reminder of your values and beliefs.
- Soulful Journaling: Writing to explore the depths of one’s inner life, feelings, and soul’s desires, often through prompts that encourage introspection and self-discovery.
- Artistic Expression as Devotion: Creating art as a form of spiritual practice, whether painting, music, writing, or dance, to express and connect with the divine or the essence of life.
- Mindfulness: Mindful Meditation, Mindful Cooking, Mindful Eating, and other expressions of Mindful Living: Practicing presence and awareness with the aim of connecting to the present moment on a profound level and touching a sense of unity with all.
- Spiritual Fellowship: Gathering with others in sisterhoods and communities for the purpose of shared spiritual growth, support, and communal practices.
- Silent Retreats: Spending time in silence and solitude to listen to the voice of one’s inner being, often in a retreat setting that supports deep spiritual work.
- Guided Imagery and Visualization: Using the imagination to visit inner landscapes, meet with aspects of the self, or connect with spiritual guides for insight and healing.
- Energy Work: Engaging in practices such as Reiki (not familiar with Reiki? Join my next virtual Reiki class), Yoga, Qi Gong, or Tai Chi that work with the body’s energy systems to enhance spiritual alignment and balance.
- Connecting with the Divine Feminine: Engaging with practices that honor and invoke the energy of the Divine Feminine, such as working with goddess archetypes, embracing qualities like intuition, receptivity, and nurturing, or participating in women’s circles and rituals that celebrate feminine wisdom and strength.
- Soul-Enriching Activities: Embrace additional practices that nourish your soul, such as traveling the world, tending to a garden, indulging in daydreams, or any other activity that brings joy and fulfillment to your being.
- Intuitive Movement: Dance, Stretch, and Flow: This practice encourages you to dance, stretch, and move in ways that feel instinctual and freeing, allowing you to connect deeply with your body’s wisdom and the rhythm of your soul.
While self-care tends to our physical and emotional needs, soul-care reaches deeper, nurturing the essence of who we truly are.
Your Soulful Path Forward: An Invitation
If you’re seeking a path to deeper self-connection, one that will empower you to find answers and guidance from within, I invite you to take the Journey into the Soul with me.
Engage with Your Soul: A Closing Reflection
As you contemplate these 13 soul-care practices, which one resonates with you the most at this moment in your life? How do you envision incorporating it into your daily routine to nurture your soul and embrace your authentic self?