1. Observe self without judgment
Notice what you feel and recognize your needs. If you could keep a card that contains a list of feelings and needs, the moment you see the list attentively, you’ll likely feel connected. The most important part of this exercise is don’t judge yourself as ‘bad’ if you realize you feel angry, irritated, or sad. It’s all right; you are not a demon but only human to feel gloomy and restless sometimes. It may seem counterintuitive but accepting the wave of emotions that swell and drop within, without fighting or attaching stories to them, you’ll see them pass by and find peace within self.
We live in a noisy world of ads, information, and social media apps. And all of these distract us from our true selves. It’s vital to our well-being to live for some time daily in the space of silence and self-compassion.
2. Meditation and prayers
Just as you’d ask a friend how is he doing, it’s a good thing to check on oneself- how am I doing today? And then present the status to our best friend- God. You don’t need to ask for material things or lament about your situation. Just be present with a ‘friend’ – your Lord, and access energy from a realm beyond your little world of worries and tasks to do.
I know friends who refuse to rise from the bed in the morning until they have felt connected to God. They wake up and sit on the couch in a prayerful pose. Then they slowly breathe, feel the airs within the body, and enter a gratitude space. In a few minutes, they feel connected. Then they are ready to face the day’s challenges in a positive frame of mind.
We contribute in the world we live in- that’s the world external to our real selves. But interestingly, we are connected to each living being at a level beyond our ordinary awareness. “We are like islands in the sea,” said William James, a leading philosopher of the nineteenth century, “separate on the surface but connected in the deep.”
Paradoxical as it may sound, James, who is also regarded as the ‘father of American psychology’ believed that when we go within and connect to our selves, we realize we are connected to this gigantic universe and all beings within it.
Therefore we first need to connect to our inner world, and that would help sustain our services and relationships with others in the external world.