I count myself immensely blessed because creating sacred space is something I get to do for a living. Specifically, I lead retreats and trainings for groups of women who are seeking immersion in sacred space.
Of course, for every hour I spend working with amazing, open-hearted women, I spend another ten alone in my office, writing emails, talking on the phone or Skyping. For me, it’s crucial that I feel like I’m in sacred space then, too. You could say I’m a sacred space junkie—sacred space is where I want to live, not just once in a while but 24/7.
If that’s a desire you share, then consider using these six simple yet effective tools for helping you stay happily ensconced in temple space.
Dare to Stop
Do it often, every few minutes. For just a few seconds, take a deep breath and become fully, one hundred percent present. Drop everything that’s on your mind. Trust me, your productivity won’t plummet. And the second you become fully present, with physical and your spiritual antennae wide open, you’re in sacred space. Externally, nothing special might be going on. You might be looking at your cluttered desk, or reading an email, or wanting to stretch your weary back. No matter, internally, you’ve arrived in the temple.
Know your Sacred Images
Everyone has their own stash of images and memories that they can use to conjure up a sense of sacredness. For example, I recall a time when I lay on the forest floor among towering redwoods and felt their ancient holiness. When I forget what sacred space feels like, this is one of the images that can take me back. Do you know yours are? Try to think of at least three, and write them down somewhere where you can easily find them. If you ever find yourself struggling to access that inner realm of sacredness, use your images to help you reconnect.
Clear your desk
Some people think a messy desk indicates that you’re super-busy and therefore super-valuable. This is nonsense, pure and simple. Every now and then, you should give yourself the gift of a perfectly clean, empty, ordered desk space. It’s the outer expression of an inner attitude that says: I am willing to come to a full stop. Not just to slow down, but stop. Just as your mind works optimally when you give it moments of true silence, stillness and inactivity, so your creativity and productivity will increase if you periodically clean the slate. So tidy up, and enjoy a moment of pure bliss before you plunge back into the madness.
Insist on Beauty
Look at sanctuaries and sacred spaces around the world, and you’ll see that beauty is not negotiable. In every culture, people understood: Beauty is an essential facet of sacredness. To invoke the power of beauty into your work space, use this two-step practice: First, make sure you have something beautiful to rest your eyes on—a flower, perhaps, or an image that a piece of art. Second, you should pause, every now and then, to look at the object you’ve chosen. As you do, drink in its beauty. Feel it as part of you, a reflection to remind you of your own essential beauty.
Bless Your Water
Blessing water and drinking it while you work is an easy and beautiful practice. Hold a glass or container of water in your hands, or place your palms over it. With eyes open or closed, take a few seconds to acknowledge this water as the sacred gift it is. Try to envision it as pure, healing light, and affirm that as it flows through you, it will wash away all impurity or sickness.
Remember Your Purpose
We can’t expect to love every minute of our working life. We should, however, feel that what we spend a third of our lives doing is meaningful and contributes, even in a very small way, to making the world a better place. If you don’t feel that is the case, you should take a good hard look at your options. Life is too precious to waste on activities your soul does not support.
But even those of us who really believe in the value of what we do can easily lose sight of that awareness. So take a moment, right now, to imagine that the world is saying “Thank you”. Give the world a voice and let it express its gratitude for what you do and how you contribute. If you’re in a private place, do it out loud. Really take in and absorb what the world says to you. Inhale deeply, and allow your heart to be nourished and recharged.