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Spirituality and IBD


Spirituality is often overlooked in relation to our health and wellbeing, even though many studies have found strong connections! What is spirituality?: “The vital center of a person; that which is held sacred” ...but really, the definition is very individualized and up for discussion. For some people it is religion, for some is it gratitude, or yoga, or a general sense of purpose Spirituality has 2 parts: 1️⃣ Purpose: What are your values and what matters most in your life? What gives your life meaning? 2️⃣ Transcendence: What sustains you in challenging times? How do you find strength to let go and rise above? Why does spirituality matter? Finding positive beliefs, comfort, and strength, especially during difficult times, enhances our overall health and can promote healing, prevent certain illnesses and help you cope with sickness. This can lead to things like improved sleep, less anxiety, decreased pain, and less psychological distress Having a strong sense of spirituality also helps guide our decisions and behaviors, so that we feel really good about our lives! So obviously, spirituality is not something to overlook then when we are dealing with a chronic illness! For me, I try to cultivate and grow my spirituality through a mix of many things: the religious roots I grew up knowing, my connectedness with a higher power, the community and relationships I have, and how I give my talents away to make the world a better place On a scale of 1-10, how satisfied are you with your spirituality? Ask yourself these questions: 🤔What is my purpose and meaning in life? 🤔Do I know what my values are and live by them? 🤔What do I care about? 🤔What keeps me going in challenging times? 🤔When do I really feel alive? 🤔What do I do to nurture my soul? As a health care practitioner, I find this conversation difficult but so important to have with clients. They tend to ask me, “what should I eat?”, and tend to stray away from the spirit convo. Where I see a heck of a lot of transformation though, is with this stuff




Can spirituality affect healing? YES!


A study done a Duke University Medical Center’s VA hospital asked patients undergoing cardiac surgery if they would like to opt in for strangers to pray for them. A doctor and nurse then recruited prayers from strangers for the patients who said yes


The patients who opted for the prayers had 50-100% FEWER side effects than did the patients who rejected the offer for prayers


There is emerging evidence that spirituality can play a powerful role in health and healing



Our individual spirituality connects to our health and wellbeing because it's what gets us out of bed in the morning, gives our life meaning, and helps us through hard times


Has anyone else really noticed they needed to beef up their spirituality during the last year? 🙋🙋🙋


Here are my top 7 tips to enhance your spirituality:


1️⃣ Sit down and write out your top 10 values. Then, narrow it down to just 5. Then, narrow it down to just 3. Let your decisions be guided by these 3 values


2️⃣ Do honest, good work that you can be proud of


3️⃣ Find a centering practice you like and do it often: meditation, gratitude, affirmations, grounding, etc


4️⃣ Do what you love! Not only what other people tell you to do or what you think you “should” do


5️⃣ What is your gift? Everyone has at least one. Then, figure out how to give it away!


6️⃣ Find community and love them


7️⃣ Journal: what did I do today that aligned with my values? This will get you where you want to go


What else do you do to support your spirituality? I'd LOVE to have a conversation with you about this stuff...are you up for it?...


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Leslie Conzemius, R.N.

Integrative Health Coach

leslie@abundanceintegrative.com