Whether you’ve been on a healing journey for many years, or getting started down this path, there are a number of different spiritual tools and practices that you’ve probably been tempted to try, but might need a little more details or encouragement from the universe before diving in.
There’s often a shroud of mystery around certain more spiritual activities, so let’s take a moment to peel back the layers and hopefully encourage you to give them a try.
Below we share insights into our favorite spiritual tools and practices you can incorporate into your monthly, weekly and even daily life.
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A modern mystic is someone who incorporates ancient wisdom into their modern lives. Sound like you? Check out this five-class program from YA Classes where you will focus on five key modalities to reveal your personal power and support you in your spiritual, mystical, and life journey: astrology, shadow work, crystal healing, spirit communication and manifestation.
First, Set an Intention for Your Spiritual Practice
Before you jump head-first into some (or all!) of these powerful spiritual tools and practices, take time to get clear on your intention: What exactly is your “why”?
As with any spiritual practice, you’re not going to get far without an intention. It’s that intention and purpose that will turn a pretty rock into a healing crystal and a burning stick of wood into an energetic cleanse. Are you hoping to heal a certain trauma? Or maybe gain perspective and clarity on your present life? Or perhaps you want to bring more peace into your world?
Once you know your why, these spiritual tools can be truly life-changing!
You may be familiar with setting an intention in yoga class. Here’s The Power of Sankalpa: Here’s Everything You Need to Know About Setting Intentions in Yoga
Here are 11 Spiritual Tools and Practices That Can Change Your Life:
Ready to deepen into your self and transform your life? We promise you, weave in these spiritual tools and practices into your daily rituals and you will experience more clarity, presence and joy.
1. Sound Healing
We can recognize the way that sounds impact the nervous system by noticing the way our bodies react to sounds that startle us and trigger our fight or flight response. Working with healing sounds to counteract these stressors we inevitably face each day can have a powerful effect on your nervous system.
Sound healing can be something as active as chanting mantra (more info on that next!) or as passive as listening to healing frequencies on YouTube with headphones on while laying in bed. For the most potent experience, consider going to a sound bath in your community, where there’s nothing to do but relax and receive whatever the sound medicine wants to offer you!
Want to know more about this spiritual practice? Here’s Sound Healing 101: Everything You Need to Know About This Practice
2. Forest Bathing
Forest bathing is a simple (and free!) spiritual practice that originated in Japan (called shinrin-yoku) and can have a powerful effect on your entire energetic body, mind and spirit.
Forest bathing is wonderful exercise in present-moment-awareness and deepens your connection with Mama Gaia.
Find a quiet place in nature where you can walk around without being disturbed (this can be your back yard or a park – work with what you got!). Leave your phone in your car or at least turn it off so you can disconnect and stay present with the sights, scents and sounds around you.
Follow your intuition and let your senses be your guide. Allow yourself to literally touch and feel the textures of the tree trunks and ground around you and let your inner child play and explore! You can even go barefoot and receive grounding benefits. Give yourself any amount of time to forest bathe.
3. Crystal Healing
Crystals, along with light, sound and aromatherapy, are a kind of vibrational healing, which means they work because of their powerful dominant resonant frequency, or vibration. Everything around you has a vibration, and on a molecular level, crystals are perfectly structured which gives them a very strong and steady vibration.
Us mere humans are not so perfect on the molecular level and therefore our vibration is more easily manipulated by stronger vibrations like those of crystals. Through the law of entrainment, our own body’s frequencies can be elevated by those of the crystals that we hold or place in our environment.
If you’re reading this article, there’s a good chance you already have at least one crystal in your toolbox, but you may not know how to get the most out of it!
If you don’t have a crystal collection, my advice is to always enter a crystal store with an open mind and don’t get too caught up on the meanings and explanations you will likely see associated with each crystal. Let your own intuition be your guide and pick the stones that you are drawn to most – because odds are you’re drawn to them for a reason!
Give your crystals a job: maybe you want to keep it in your bedroom to help you sleep, keep at your desk to encourage clear communication, aid in a new beginning, or put it as a centerpiece in your living room to spread good energy throughout your home.
4. Clearing Energy With Smoke
Working with the element of smoke is super accessible and easy to incorporate into your daily life: smudging is a spiritual practice takes very little time and can be utilized for a nearly infinite number of situations!
Two of the most popular smudging tools are sage and palo santo, but these have both come under a bit of scrutiny because of their increased popularity in recent years and the ecological effects of that, so we encourage you to explore other types of smudging elements like sandalwood, lavender, cinnamon and sweetgrass.
You can burn them daily to quite literally smoke out any negative energy in your space. This can be done each morning before heading to work by fanning the smoke around your body (you can also often find beautiful feather fans to help with this!) or before bed.
You can also fan the smoke around your space whenever you feel like there’s a need for an energetic shift: before a guest arrives, after they leave, after an argument with a partner or even before a meditation session.
5. Create a Sacred Space or Altar
Nothing can bring magical intentions into your world quite like a sacred space in your home. Not only does this give you an opportunity to get creative with meaningful items you might have around your home, but it can serve as a touchstone for your spiritual journey.
To create a sacred space or altar, you don’t need anything elaborate or any huge amount of space. A square foot of space on a table is plenty to get the job done – but you can take up a whole room if you have it! An altar is the home for sacred things you’ve collected from feathers to candles to crystals and should be in a place that won’t easily be disturbed by pets or kids.
Visit your sacred space for your meditations, prayers, crystal grid creations, oracle deck pulling – the uses are endless! Get creative with how you set your space up so it feels inspiring to you and encourages you to spend time with it in your daily life.
6. Cacao Ceremonies
A beautiful way to connect with a partner, friend or even your own heart is through a cacao ceremony. There’s a deep-rooted history with cacao medicine, so take the time to learn about the specific cacao you will be working with. Where exactly is it sourced? Are there any specifics about that particular location that might be helpful to know the most appropriate way to honor it?
You can order ceremonial grade cacao online or purchase it on your travels. The ceremony begins long before you start drinking the cacao, so you can use any of the above mentioned smokes to clear the energy of the cacao itself, as well as any additional ingredients and the pots and utensils you’ll be using as you prepare it.
Specific measurements can vary depending on how strong you want the cacao to be, so please research the appropriate proportions for you/your group and combine the cacao with the milk of your choice (I use homemade oat milk) and sweetener of your choice (I suggest local honey) until it is blended over heat.
Once it’s thickened, you can serve it in a cup you love. Close your eyes and feel the cup in your hands, smell the cacao, and set an intention for this ceremony. Take a sip and feel it in your mouth, throat and belly. Take your time drinking your cup and you’ll eventually start to feel an energy in your body and an opening in your heart.
Cacao is a stimulant, but isn’t like caffeine, so it’s best to do this spiritual practice in the morning (you can even substitute it for your morning coffee!), unless you’re okay with being up a bit at night!
The benefits of meditation can’t be overstated, so here’s your sign that it’s time to get started with this spiritual practice.
There are so many different styles of meditation it can be overwhelming, especially if you’re thinking to yourself, “I can’t ever get my mind to stop thinking!” The easiest way to start a meditation practice is to remove your expectations of what it “should be” and designate a few minutes every day to sit in stillness.
It’s called a “meditation practice” for a reason, so getting yourself into a meditative state requires plenty of practice along the way. Meditation apps like Calm or Insight Timer can help with accountability and offer different types of meditation, such as guided, sound and mindfulness, and meditations with specific goals and affirmations.
Nothing can connect you to your breath, open your throat chakra and send positive energy through your body and into the world quite like chanting mantra.
The exact Sanskrit translation for the word mantra is “through the mind” and, as Dr. Kulreet Chaudhary notes in her book, Sound Medicine, a mantra is “considered to be a numinous sound, a hallowed utterance that is simultaneously able to open the mind and body to the boundaryless, shared energy of the universe, while also locating the divine energy within.”
Now what exactly does all of this mean? Well, to put it more simply, a mantra is a sound or phrase of sounds that we can repeat in our minds or aloud to connect with sacred energy. The most common mantra that you’ve probably heard of, and maybe even chanted, is “Om.”
Mantras can be sung or chanted for an extended amount of time, typically anywhere between 3-11 minutes while calling in a specific intention for yourself (or for the world). You don’t have to be a “good singer” to effectively work with mantra in your daily life either! YouTube channels like Meditative Mind have a ton of options that you can try until you find one that resonates.
Typically, I chant first thing in the morning to connect with my system, but you can work with mantra anytime that you feel like you’re in need of a mental, physical and spiritual boost.
Create a Mantra Mindset
With Youmie Jean Francois
Ready to weave mantra into your spiritual tools and practices routine? Mantra Mindset is a five-class program on YA Classes that helps reframe what you say to yourself in a more positive and empowering way, so you can shift from lack to abundance, negativity to gratitude, and anxiety to peace.
It’s truly wild when you realize that one of the most powerful tools we have in our spiritual tool belt is also one of the simplest things you do: breathing.
Now, of course, they call it “breathwork” for a reason, because it involves a bit more awareness and control than your average day-to-day breathing to stay alive, but you can access deep states of consciousness, process old traumas, and give yourself a natural energy boost when given the right guidance and manipulate the breath in specific ways.
You’ve likely experienced aspects of pranayama breathwork during a yoga class and noticed shifts in your mind and body. There are a multitude of different types of breathwork avenues: from Wim Hof to holotropic to somatic breathwork – all of which have similar benefits.
A study concluded that breathwork can improve cognitive performance and provide stress relief. While you can theoretically benefit from a breathwork session alone, it’s wise to work with a trained facilitator who can guide you through the process whether you do it as a private 1-1 session or with a group until you learn how your body might respond.
10. Somatic Movement
The body keeps the score, and it’s now well known that energy from traumas and life events get stored inside the body and can manifest in physical or emotional dis-ease, UNLESS it is moved out and processed.
One healing way of processing stuck energy in the body is through somatic movement.
Somatic movement is a powerful spiritual practice that focuses on the inward experience as a result of a certain move (like shaking the body) as opposed to the way it looks on the outside.
Taking a somatic yoga or dance class can be an incredibly powerful way of processing and feeling emotions that might be hiding inside your body – so don’t be surprised if you find yourself feeling the urge to cry or release sounds to continue helping move that energy out!
Work with a facilitator in person during your first few sessions to guide the process, before practicing on your own. It can be a little awkward and uncomfortable doing these sessions with a group, but everyone is in the same boat and it can be a powerful ego death to allow yourself to close your eyes and move the body in new and healing ways!
11. Ice Baths
You’ve probably seen a person on social media or TV in a bathing suit getting into a tub or pool full of ice and thought they were out of their minds. While it might look crazy (and might take serious guts to take the first ice plunge!) there are incredible healing benefits to this somewhat uncomfortable spiritual practice.
This form of cryotherapy has been a common practice for athletes to help with inflammation and post-workout recovery and has actually been a practice for centuries. The NIH has done numerous studies that support claims that ice baths are good for so many things from immunity, reduces inflammation and post-exercise swelling, and even managing chronic pain!
There isn’t a set temperature or amount of time that people stay in – and the more you do it, the longer and colder you can handle! But typically the temperatures are between 50-60 degrees F for anywhere between 3-15 minutes.
While, theoretically, you could fill a tub full of icy water and try this at home alone, we encourage you to first experience this practice with a trainer or teacher who has the education to help guide you through the process and make sure you’re not spending too much time in the water (which can pose health risks, depending on the temperature).
Plus, it’s really helpful to have someone there to help encourage you along the way! The first few seconds can be really intense and emotional, but once you’re able to control your breath and breathe into the sensations, it can be a beautiful experience.
Elevate Your Life! Use These Spiritual Tools and Practices for More Depth, Clarity and Joy
Of course, this list of spiritual tools and practices is by no means complete. There are so many more mystical spiritual practices that you can explore and you can go MUCH deeper into all of the above modalities. From yoga and chakra healing to plant medicine to float tanks to having an akashic records reading – the list goes on!
That said, a fun challenge would be to pick one of these spiritual tools and practices to try each month and see which resonate most for your lifestyle and intentions/goals. Let us know which ones are your favorite and how it goes! Comment below, we love hearing from you!