How to Create a Ritual That Fulfills You From The Inside Out

This is a Guest Post Contribution from Paye Tina

As a traveling yoga instructor, jetlag makes it difficult to sustain my home practice. My home practice is what I like to call “the ritual.” It’s a way of remembering who I am at my deepest level. It’s a time to fully let go of my roles, as a teacher, student, and traveler. My ritual allows me to explore other parts of myself, and you can do the same no matter what roles you play: father, mother, entrepreneur, or artist.

The truth is, your ritual is already inside of you. They are creative acts in your daily life and you just have to keep cultivating that kind of spirit. For me, rituals are more than just yoga postures. Rituals include my thoughts, feelings, and the way I experience the world. Writing is also one of my rituals because it helps me make sense of things. I write because it helps me see the bigger picture of life. I practice yoga because it provides equanimity of surrender and control. My writing and yoga rituals have taught me that I am enough.

Your ritual may be cooking, jogging, painting, meditating or taking photographs. Your ritual is something you enjoy doing alone in silence. You don’t have to have a reason for loving it, you just do. It makes you feel like you’re becoming a better person; you feel humbly significant. In return, you give it back to the world.

Sometimes the rituals are difficult to sustain because they require consistency, commitment, and energy. Like sand, rituals can slip right through your finger tips and without your ritual, life seems ordinary and almost mundane.

Ritual needs time, space and practice, so I’ve come up with these steps for you to get a firm grip of your ritual:

Write down three to five activities you truly enjoy doing and can imagine as a personal ritual.

This may be singing, meditating, drawing, etc. If you already have a consistent practice, think about how you can expand your practice. You may want to consider sharing your ritual with your community by attending events or seminars where you can share your passion and fully be yourself.

Write down why you love your practice.

You could write, “This practice makes me feel free, connected, totally myself, spontaneous, deep, at peace.”

Pick one activity you can envision yourself doing consistently. 

A minimum of twice a week.

Set goals for yourself by asking the following questions:

  • What do I intend to gain this month?
  • How often will I practice? For how long?
  • What qualities do I wish to foster?
  • How can I sustain my practice in everyday life?

Remember not to set big goals or else you run the risk of failing. If your goal is to practice yoga 4x a week and you already don’t practice at all, chances are that goal is unrealistic. Set attainable goals that you know you can attain so you’ll feel satisfied!

Set and repeat a mantra each time before your ritual.

A mantra is a word or phrase you repeat to yourself when you practice your ritual. Here are a few mantras you could say to yourself when you cook:

“I am cooking, that’s all I am doing. I will focus my thoughts on making healthy, delicious food for me and my family. I will practice everyday and I will cook for at least 35 minutes.” Or your mantra may sound something like, “I practice compassion and self-loving no matter how my food tastes. I will remain calm and peaceful in my everyday life even when challenges arise in the cooking process.”

Keep a journal and keep track of your progress.

Write down a few words before or after your ritual. These should include your thoughts and experiences. If you can be consistent with keeping progress, you’re heading in a positive direction!

Be persistent, honest, and realistic…and have fun!

You’ll likely feel discouraged sometimes when chaos and turmoil arise. These feelings will dissipate, I promise. Keep doing what you makes you feel great and don’t give up.

These steps have helped me develop and sustain a fulfilling life that makes me feel successful, and I hope you find this helpful too! This process is all about working from the inside out. As I’ve learned, it’s all about the smaller acts that matter. If you have any questions or wish to share your experience, I’d love to hear you thoughts in the comments below!

About Paye Tina

Screen Shot 2016-01-18 at 9.27.17 AMPaye Tina is a traveling yoga teacher and coach based in Switzerland, Thailand and Taiwan. As a Third Culture kid, she grew up on the Big Island of Hawaii and started practicing yoga at 13 years old.

She combines Eastern philosophy and Western anatomy in her teaching and celebrates individual expressions. Find her at www.payetina.yoga and on Twitter/Instagram: @playfullyyoga.