Alignment is a concept we often discuss in therapy but not one that is talked about in our daily lives. Alignment is living your life in accordance with your core values and trusting your intuition to guide your actions with what your true self knows, needs, wants, and desires. It seems simple but every day we face pressure from ourselves, our jobs, our loved ones, and society to be or to do things that may be out of alignment with our true selves. Alignment is important because when we are out of alignment, we can feel exhausted, guilty, fearful, annoyed, and impatient.
How to Know if You’re in Alignment
- Alignment brings a sense of peace, contentment, and fulfillment
- When you’re living in alignment with yourself you can have increased self-esteem, confidence, energy, and presence
- Alignment does not mean absence of fear – you could still be nervous to do something but there will be feelings of excitement and energy alongside the fear
- No longer feel a sense of “should” – the little voice in the back of your mind that’s constantly telling you what you “should” be doing, “should” be achieving, “should” be feeling, or how you “should” look-that little voice goes away!
Steps to Live in Alignment
- Assess and identify your values. Values are your core self’s most genuine desire for how you want to behave as a human being. What do you believe in? What is at the core of who you are? This will be your guide to how you want to live your life.
- Set values-based intentions. Setting daily intentions and reminding yourself of your values, what is most important to you, can help you stay in alignment by keeping those things at the forefront of your mind even in our hectic lives. Try setting intentions each morning when you wake up, it can really set the tone for your day.
- Slow down. In our busy lives this is often easier said than done, but it’s an invaluable part of finding and keeping your alignment. Practice being present and mindful even if it’s just for one task in your day-like brushing your teeth. Continue practicing and it will become more natural to be present in everything that you do.
- Listen. If you are unsure how to approach something in your life, try journaling and ask your intuition. Allow your thoughts to flow out onto the page. In this space and quiet, the answer will likely come to you. Listen to your intuition, and choose alignment before action.
Learning to live in alignment is a process that becomes easier with time. One of the hardest steps of this process is letting go of friends, plans for the future, jobs, communities, ideas, and even parts of ourselves that are no longer serving us or our current values. Change and growth is a normal and a necessary part of life. Try to normalize this concept for yourself and allow yourself to grieve the loss of people and things that are no longer in alignment with your life. Though these changes can be painful and difficult they will ultimately lead to a more content, peaceful, and mindful life.