“No man ever steps in the same river twice, for it’s not the same river and he’s not the same man,” Greek philosopher, Heraclitus. If this is true, and in my experience it is, we need to start having a different conversation around habits. And I don’t just mean so-called “bad” habits. Let me explain.
Habitual behaviors will often give us comfort because of the way they anchor us into what is familiar. We know ourselves, we can anticipate a result and we don’t have to think, we get to relax into the known. As spiritual journeyers, habits can feel like a welcomed reprieve of not having to think or “be” with something. We get a break. But what if our habits are preventing us from actually moving forward? What if our habits are meeting us at the level of needs we had when they were developed and not necessarily who we are right now?
Most of us recognize that we are co-creators in our life experiences but we often focus on the bigger aspects of life. We want to manifest that house, that relationship or that job and in doing this we lose sight of the moment to moment growth opportunities that enable us to become the person we need to be to welcome in the bigger changes in our lives. Why? Because we all engage in habits and without conscious awareness, we solidify former aspects of ourselves and don’t leave room for the ways we change every moment of every day.
We are always growing and evolving, it is the nature of life. These changes can be so small that we miss them when we aren’t paying attention. The truth is, we are never the same person from one minute to the next. It is through the comfort of habits that we can fall prey to lulling ourselves back to sleep in that dreaded place called “auto-pilot”. Fortunately, we can’t help but grow so even on auto-pilot we will evolve but we will likely slow ourselves down because we aren’t fully engaged in our power this way.
Don’t get me wrong, habits are not bad. However, unconscious habits are a thief of life and have the capacity to slow down our spiritual progress. They can become that reliable friend that we have long outgrown that we keep around simply because we are used to them. Perhaps, we don’t even relate to them anymore, we just enjoy the comfort of knowing they are there.
When we consciously choose our habits we begin to anchor into our ever-evolving self and we begin to find comfort in ourselves. We trust ourselves and our ability to grow and change. We start to see that change doesn’t have to be scary because we trust ourselves in our daily micro-changes. We start to give ourselves permission to open up to more life-giving opportunities that keep us growing with ease and joy.
Each day, each moment, when you are about to partake in a habit, pause and ask deeply into your being, “does this resonate with me in this moment?” Notice the response you get. Notice if it feels aligned and flowing. If it does, trust your “YES”. If it feels misaligned, ask yourself what need is beneath the habit that is asking to be met. Sit with other possible actions, even if the action is to pause, that could fulfill this need.
Habits naturally fulfill needs that we have, it’s important to understand what those needs are. Further, it’s important to know if your habits are coming from needs that represent a former part of you or if they can foster your ever-changing self. Habits are a powerful way to anchor into your evolving spiritual nature if you utilize them in the most empowering way, which is to make them conscious choices based on who you have grown into.
Katy Bray is a clairvoyant, energy worker and co-founder of Live with the Lights On. Katy is also a Vedic Counselor, dancer, and student of Tantra. Katy is the creator of Energy Architecture and Medicinal Movement. She is an author, speaker, retreat facilitator and a catalyst for all who seek her counsel.