Cleansing Your Spirit

(This article was written in the winter of 2010 for a colleague’s newsletter.)

Late winter is a wonderful time to cleanse not just your body but also your spirit.  Cleansing is about letting go of things you don’t need anymore, things that are in the way of your becoming who you want to be in the present and future.

  • What do you want to invite into your heart and your life this year?
  • What ideas or perceptions do you need to let go of to make room?

Clarifying Intent: What do you want?

Before we can move toward something new, we need to know what we are reaching for–not a perfect, detailed version complete with road map and timetable (you can develop all of that as you go if you need it) but a clear, compelling sense of what you want to invite in.  One way to create that for yourself is to ask yourself What do I want to BE more of this year?”  Do you want to be more open?  More playful?  Freer?  Lighter?  More engaged?  More compassionate with yourself and others?  More joyful?  More adventurous?…

Decide what quality of being you want to invite in this year.  Say it out loud: “This year I am becoming more X” or “This is the year of X.”  Notice what it feels like, in your body, to invite this in.  Write your statement down.

Now write down at least three things you could do that would invite you to be that quality more in the next month, six months, year.  Are these things you want to commit to for yourself?  If so, say them out loud too.

Getting Out of Your Own Way:  What do you need to let go of?

Setting a strong intention is a good thing, but usually there are things that will push against those desires and intentions.  In order to step into what we want to become, we need to identify what holds us back and let go of those things.  Usually what holds us back is habitual negative perceptions–judgments or beliefs–about ourselves.

Ask yourself what will get in your way as you take steps to be who you want to be this year.  What fears, what assumptions, what beliefs, what judgments do you hold that will push against this choice?  Write them down.

Is embodying those fears, assumptions, beliefs or judgments serving you well in your life?  If not, do you want to let them go?  Write down what you want to let go of.  Now stand up and say out loud “I am letting go of X.” Focus on your exhale for a few breaths.  What does it feel like in your body to let go of this?

Locking in and Supporting Your Intentions

Now it’s time to create tangible support for what you want for this year.  Find a symbol that will remind you of what you are inviting in this year.  It might be a stone, a piece of jewelry, an article of clothing, a picture, a tune, whatever will remind you.  It can be something you already have, something you make, or something you buy or find.

Carry that object/tune/image with you or put it somewhere you will see or hear it regularly–several times a day.  Use these encounters to remind yourself to breathe in this intention, and to breathe out anything that is pushing against this that you need to let go of.  Also use these encounters to notice the ways in which you are inviting this way of being into your life and to celebrate!

© Tasha Harmon, January 2010.  Please feel free to share this, but please do so with my name and contact information attached and please do not publish it without my written permission.  Thank you.

Click here to download a pdf of this article.

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