Spirituality a Strength
Whether it is mental health, substance abuse, suicide, or general health and wellness, spirituality can be a strength and protective factor. Spirituality and religion are similar, but can be different things depending on the person. For some they may be religious but lack a spiritual connection, some may be deeply spiritual and not affiliate with any specific religion, while some are both committed to a religion and deeply spiritually connected. Either way, there are many benefits of being spiritual and/ or religious, no matter the religion.
Spirituality, whether practiced at a synagogue, mosque, church, on a mountain top, or in your living room, often provides someone with understanding and meaning in life. Spirituality can help one to gain a greater perspective and increased insight on life, how to cope with challenges, and set meaningful life goals. Those who are spiritual sometimes practice prayer or meditation, which can also be viewed as practicing mindfulness.
Another strength of spirituality is that it often connects you to a social network. Finding common belief with others can help provide not only emotional support, but may be connected to other resources. Some religions offer free counseling, provide financial support, or free activities that are engaging and promote a healthy lifestyle. Whether formal or informal, it can be helpful to talk to others who understand you, have empathy, have similar goals, and may be experiencing similar struggles. Often places of worship are great ways to make healthy friendships and get connected to a community.
Spirituality and religion can help individuals cope with many different things. If it is substance abuse, some religions have specific resources set aside for substance abuse assistance. Some run 12-step groups for addiction management. It is not uncommon to find that an Alcoholics Anonymous group is hosted at a church or other religious site. Religious groups can also help individuals struggling to cope with grief and loss. Some spiritual leaders can provide professional or unprofessional counseling.
Seeking Additional Help
Although spirituality and religion can be a protective factor and a strength, it may not always be an absolute solution. For substance abuse, mental health, and physical health issues, it is still important to connect with a professional. In some situations professional mental health counseling and/ or medication is necessary. If you’re in the Southern California region, please contact Crownview Medical Group to get in touch with a trained medical professional.