How to Guard Your Emotional Well-Being & Boost Your Spiritual Immune System – By Anna Haddad
As a yoga teacher, student, and athlete, I love learning about and sharing the benefits of yoga and meditation on the human body. One day I was thinking about the 12 distinct, and incredibly, complex systems in the human body that make things work. Their functions reflect their names: cardiovascular, digestive, endocrine, immune, integumentary, lymphatic, muscular, nervous, reproductive, respiratory, skeletal, and urinary. These systems help deliver nutrients; collect and process information; regulate metabolism, growth, and development; defend and support the body; break down, absorb, and remove waste; produce cells and offspring; maintain the body and its organs; cause physical action; and so much more.
But there’s also one more system that allows us to function at our highest capacity – I like to call it the spiritual immune system.
Most of us know the value of taking good care of our body’s systems so that we stay physically healthy and are able to maintain a healthy lifestyle. We educate ourselves on how to eat well, how to exercise, and even how to rest and restore. When we do the work and apply this to our everyday lives, we reap the benefits and encourage those we know and love to do the same. But all too often we pay less attention to our spiritual immune system, and if left unchecked and not prioritized, we find ourselves in situations where we feel taken for granted, and much worse, taken advantage of, manipulated, hurt and betrayed.
I consider myself incredibly lucky to be surrounded by wonderful family and friends who support me in more ways than one. They deliver on commitments, they are accountable, they stay in their integrity, and go towards what’s right (not what’s easy or comfortable). They practice their values, as opposed to just professing them. They place a high priority on empowering themselves, and thus showing others the attributes of what being empowered looks like. This includes being autonomous, determined, and effective; having self-trust; possessing the ability to decide and make good choices; connecting and nurturing others; and practicing self-affirmation. And of course, creating boundaries and standing by them.
My hope is that it’s never too late. We can constantly strive to know ourselves and our tendencies. We can work on setting boundaries.
Don’t worry, it gets easier with practice. My hope is that it’s never too late. We can constantly strive to know ourselves and our tendencies. We can work on setting boundaries. We will begin to recognize rather quickly that those who don’t set boundaries vibrate towards each other. Why? Because we simply attract what we tolerate. And those who have a deep sense of Self, prioritize protecting their inner peace.
I have fallen many times, and so will you. We are all human. But what can you do each day to not only maintain but also magnify and strengthen your spiritual immune system?
Perhaps it’s setting boundaries to keep your defenses–literally, your immunity–strong. Perhaps it’s surrounding yourself with people who keep you safe and want you to shine, who provide you with the courage, inspiration, and resources to feel deeply connected. Maybe it’s creating space in your body by removing shame and waste, by letting go of the things that don’t serve your soul. Perhaps it’s by finding stillness in your mind through prayer and meditation to keep your spiritual body, your soul, well fed, and give birth to a renewed purpose in your life.
It’s been quite a year for all of us on a global scale. This message started out as a dharma talk I gave my students in a yoga class one day, which I edited into a longer blog post to share on the launch date of my beautiful website for ONEYOGAHOUSE. There are so many to thank, those who have walked with me on my path of strengthening all of the systems of my body, heart, and spirit. You have helped me process, defend, let go, give birth to new endeavors, and surrender in ways that have left me feeling renewed and full of possibility and purpose. It was through this journey that ONEYOGAHOUSE was born. I humbly bow down to all of you, my teachers, friends, community, and family.