You don’t have to get all airy-fairy, live in the woods or abandon the trappings of modern life to be more spiritual. Nor do you have to make a pilgrimage to the temples of Tibet. Being more spiritual is about attitude and actions towards yourself and others.
1. Treat Others the Way You Expect to Be Treated
The question of how to be more spiritual begins with how do you want to be treated by others - because if you don't treat people well, you cannot expect to be treated well in return! Nobody's perfect, but we should at least strive to be better and be patient with those around us, who are trying to do the same. Poor manners and negativity in others can be very irritating, but is it your business to judge that person? What about you - don't you think others might find you just as irritating? A spiritual life starts with becoming more self-aware and looking at how we fit into society. Treat others the way you wish to be treated and your life will be spiritually enriched.
2. Look at Life from a Different Perspective
If you don't start looking at life from a different angle, how can you possibly be more spiritual? It's easy to judge others or give sound advice, because you are able to see another person's problems or dilemma from a different perspective. This is also true for your own life, but it takes some practice to be objective and look at your own life through somebody else's eyes. Looking at yourself from a different angle will help you to determine what needs changing.
3. Embrace Change as a Positive Thing
Whether you like it or not, life is about change. A strong and wise person knows this and will embrace change, take problems in their stride no matter what situation life throws at them. At home, in our relationships with others, at work or school - change is the one thing (together with taxes) that you can always rely on as a fact of life. Accepting change as an opportunity instead of an obstacle to happiness will enable you to embrace a more spiritual life.
4. Accept Positive Thinking as the Best Way Forward
Positive thinking is essential, if you wish to attain spirituality. If you are faced with an important decision, but immediately regard it as an unobtainable goal, you won't even try to change your life. A person who looks at the same decision with a positive outlook will see it as a challenge, something new to try, and if they fail, they'll simply try a different approach to achieve the same goal. The person who is negative will end their life thinking about all the "what if's" and will regret many missed opportunities. This is a destructive way in which to lead your life. Allow your glass to be always half-full, not half-empty, and you'll be much happier.
5. Stop Complaining
Constant complaining is a symptom of an ungrateful attitude towards the world and the people around you. All you have to remember is this: you are accountable for all your actions, so don't go round blaming everybody else! Change starts with the person you see in the mirror, namely yourself. If you cannot reach the target you've set yourself, it's your own fault for not making the goal more attainable. Be grateful for every smile that greets you on your way to work, every happy moment with loved ones and all the kindness offered by strangers, when things are difficult. Complaining and negativity sap your energy - the very energy that you need to turn your life around and make things better.
6. Discover Who You Really Are
Before you can learn how to be more spiritual, you need to undergo an honest self-assessment. Who are you really beneath that mask of negativity? Would you be any different, if you moved to a hotter/colder climate, or changed your gender/hairdo/car? Inside, we remain exactly who we were at age 17, although we may have greater insight into the world around us and lost our "innocence". When you try to redefine yourself, bear this in mind and tackle the things you don't like about yourself first, no matter how uncomfortable or difficult this might be. You'll work out quickly that the things you don't like about yourself are also the things that put off others from being friends with you. Spirituality doesn't require you to live in a temple complex, chant all day long and wear a specific outfit - it's something deep inside you that opens up your heart to others and embraces life to the full.
7. Consider How You Can Be of Help to Others
Learning how to be spiritual also involves thinking less about one's own comforts and happiness and more about other people's. Whenever there's an opportunity to help somebody, take it and think of their comfort and happiness first. There's no need to travel to far-flung places to do voluntary work. Charity starts at "home", in your own neighborhood! Do you know somebody who's unemployed, trying to learn computer skills - perhaps you can help? Is there a child in your family or circle of friends struggling with writing and reading, who could benefit from your assistance? Could you walk a dog for the old lady/gentleman next door or get their shopping? Offer to help, don't sit around waiting for a request!
How do you stay spiritual in a material world? Or is it something you thing you should become more mindful of?