Step 1: Pick a task.
Choose a task at random, or go in order. There are 52 tasks, one for every week of the year. Find the tasks on the website, choosejoynow.org and read the essay provided to spark your own reflections and insights. You can also order a deck of cards from this site. Pick one, keep the card on your desk or mirror for the week or month ahead.
Step 2: Commit to the task and create space for contemplation.
Practice applying the task in daily life. Observe yourself and be mindful. Keeping a spiritual journal can help you to be more conscious of your spiritual life.
Notice the changes.
Step 3: Check in
Call a friend, be accountable in an active friendly way with yourself, be kind and patient, and see how you can integrate new lessons in life. Practice. Pray to the Lord. Observe yourself, learn from your missteps, and celebrate your successes.
Invite 2-3 to join you. Have tea, take a walk, do a phone or Zoom call with a sister or brother or chosen family, parent, spouse…
All of a sudden, you could be a small group! We all walk individual walks, but we can gain perspective and support from a trusted community.
In addition to the Choose Joy Tasks,
Exercise for Spiritual Growth By Frank Rose
- RELAX One of the most important things we can do to support our internal spiritual development is to relax physically. Our body tensions seem to support negativity. As long as the muscles are tight and tense, it is very hard for the inner spiritual part of us to let go and go with the flow of life.
- MEDITATE Meditation can take many different forms. What they all have in common is using some form of discipline to still the conscious levels of thinking, opening the way for deeper perceptions and insights. Thinking of the analogy of the house (put link here for the house analogy), meditation is like telling all the beasts in the basement to be quiet for a few minutes, and just listening for anything that might be going on in higher levels of the house. Spend a few moments each day in meditation.
- CULTIVATE LOVING RELATIONSHIPS People are created to live in loving relationships with others. These relationships may be within family connections, with friends, with companions at work, and with the friends who are working on their spiritual journey. Loving relationships are the real-life laboratory in which we learn what it means to be spiritual.
- ENJOY BEAUTY Beauty is one of our greatest teachers. There is nothing like a breath of fresh air, especially in some beautiful surrounding to lift our spirits. Many people have discovered the revivifying power of nature. By the millions, people flock to national parks and places of beauty. It is as if we instinctively know that beauty is a gift to the soul.
- KEEP HEALTHY We often talk of the physical and the spiritual as if they are two entirely different things, and yet they are intimately connected. It is hard for the spirit to flourish if the body is not in its best form. You might think that spiritual people would somehow rise above their physical condition. It is probably the reverse. The more spiritually minded people are, the more care they will take to be kind to their body.
- PERFORM ACTS OF KINDNESS There is tremendous value in stopping to think about the needs of others, and doing what we can to fill those needs. Think of the people you know in your life. Are some of the people going through a difficult time? Is there an anniversary coming up? Are you feeling that they could do with some help, or some words of encouragement? Take a little time to do acts of kindness for others. You will find that it gives your spiritual life a boost.
- BE USEFUL Life is a vast and complex system of functions, each person serving others and being served by others. Each human being is part of this marvelous system of interlocking functions. We are here to benefit from the system. Do something extra to remind you that you are a contributing member of the human race.
- PRAY Prayer is communication with God, and is at the heart of spirituality. A spiritual life is a life in connection with the source of our being. It is a life in which we try to align ourselves with the flow of the universe. We pray in order to remind ourselves of the connection we have with the highest power in the universe. In prayer we express gratitude for blessings received. We ask for help and support in living a spiritual life. We open ourselves to receive messages from our Higher Power. Make sure to include prayer in your life every day.
- ENJOY SOLITUDE There is a huge difference between solitude and loneliness. Loneliness is a feeling of being cut off from other people. Solitude is a feeling of being alone with God. Treasure your moments of solitude.
- SHARE WITH A FRIEND OR GROUP There is something very powerful about doing spiritual work. It is even more powerful to share our experiences with another person or with a group. See if you can find a spiritual “buddy” with whom you can share your spiritual journey.