What Exactly is Vitality? And How Can You Expand Your Vitality?
Vitality is derived from the word vita, which means life. From a yogic standpoint, when we are full of vitality, we are full of life force, or prana. This means that there is strong ojas, which translates as “essence of vitality.”
In our everyday expression, this means that in your life you experience more resilience, strength, energy, inspiration, health and confidence. There is more brightness in your eyes, and a glow in your skin. You feel lighter, and you experience more enjoyment, creativity and fulfillment day to day!
In Paramahansa Yogananda’s commentary of the great text, The Bhagavad Gita, he says that vitality is present as tejas in all beings, which comes from the cosmic fire of Spirit’s supreme consciousness within us all, down the level of the electrons and protons and atoms.
He goes on to say that this Divine Radiance comes forth in the yogi as increasing or expanding your vitality, which is characterized by a natural unfoldment of spiritual magnetism, and a quiet outer expression of deep inner joy.
Are You Excited about building your vitality now?!
Try these 6 practical tools to expand vitality in your life:
1. Regular meditation.
This all-important practice is where we connect to the life force, the fire of Spirit inside of you. Inside you is the light of the True Self, which is beyond the fear and beyond the mind chatter. It is so important to turn your energy inward at least some of the time, as most often your energy is constantly directed externally through the senses, into the world of delusion, the world of ego. Regularity is key here! While you don’t have to be intimidated or feel that you have to sit in meditation for an hour each time (unless you choose to!), I recommend sitting in daily practice for at least 5-10 minutes each morning to connect to the true inner source of vitality and to expand your vitality.
2. Finding times for stillness.
Let’s face it, we live in a really noisy world! And if we are always swept up in the chaos of life, we will be pulled in different directions. Confusion, anxiety and/or inertia will build, while focus and equanimity will decline. Consequently, your vitality will start to become dulled down. So I recommend batching time on email texts, social media, and any other sorts of media, so it’s not constantly leaking your energy and attention. Make space between appointments and meetings and carve out time to be still in nature, or in any other ways that feel nourishing to you.
3. Digesting your feelings.
When you hold on to strong feelings, whether it is anger, jealousy, resentfulness, sadness or so on, it depletes your body. Your emotional, mental, physical and spiritual well-being are all intricately intertwined. Emotions are meant to be energy in motion, meaning they are meant to flow through you.. When you hold on to them, it creates resistance and blocks in your body which can result in tightness, tension, inflammation, dysbiosis in your gut, contribute to autoimmune conditions and a whole other host of issues that degrade your vitality. For some practical exercises to release trapped emotions and open up your vitality, please check out my new book, You Are More Than You Think You Are
4. Direct your will to your purpose.
When we tune in and connect to your “why”, your dharma, which is beyond any one specific thing, but spans to include your purpose,
you become ablaze with more of that inner fire. This inner passion directs and expands your energy as it fuels your vitality.
I believe that purpose is combining your unique gifts with how they can be used to serve the greater collective. For specific information on how to distill down your specific purpose, please please be sure to read Chapter 3 in my new book, You Are a Warrior
5. Eat Sattvic foods to expand your vitality.
6. Preserve your energy by avoiding over-talking and emotional chaos.
A few of the other soul qualities mentioned in The Bhagavad Gita
are self-restraint and self-discipline. When you constantly comment on everything, and talk idly, you deplete your own life force. This is also true of getting overly involved in all the drama of everyday life…you deplete our vitality more and more. So pull back from getting so involved, and practice more witnessing
In conclusion, think of your vitality as tending the fire inside.
You don’t want it to be excessive and create burnout and depletion, and you also don’t want it to become too dim.
Nurture yourself through these practical practices on a consistent basis, and watch vitality grow in your life!
Kimberly Snyder is a multi-time New York Times bestselling author, spiritual and meditation teacher, nutritionist and holistic wellness expert. She has authored 6 books, including Radical Beauty, which she co-authored with Deepak Chopra. Her highly anticipated 6th book, You Are More Than You Think You Are: Practical Enlightenment for Everyday Life, (Hay House) published on January 25th, 2022.
She is also the founder of Solluna®, a holistic lifestyle brand, Practical Enlightenment Meditation,™ Solluna Circle and the host of her top-rated Feel Good Podcast. She has worked with dozens of top celebrities to feel their best, including Drew Barrymore, Reese Witherspoon and Channing Tatum, and has been featured by numerous national media outlets, including Good Morning America, The Today Show, The New York Times and The Wall Street Journal. Kimberly resides in Los Angeles and Hawaii with her husband and her sons.
Kimberly Snyder Author Photo by Kevin Estrada