At the start of focusing on our spiritual selves, I think a spiritual self-assessment is really helpful. Although the phrase self-assessment may either make you think of classrooms or taxes, and neither is particularly relevant here, it’s the process of identifying where you are and where you want to move to that will help to focus you.
If you google ‘spiritual self-assessment’ you’ll find lots of different resources: some very detailed and complicated, some with a printable booklet that you work through, and a few online quizzes. I’ll provide some links to the best of these at the end of my post.
But I know you don’t have much time. I know you don’t have hours to spend working your way through a booklet. The time you do have is precious, and you want to get straight to the point. So my Spiritual Self-Assessment can be done quickly, in 10 minutes a day.
So this week, I want you to ask yourself 5 questions. Use the workbook to journal your answers so that you can refer back to them.
The Spiritual Self-Assessment
Question 1: What is going well in my spiritual life?
We’re starting with the positives. What is going well? Where do you feel like you are growing? Where are you serving or volunteering? What are you learning? How is your prayer life? You might like to consider how you relax, or how you look after your own mental well-being.
Consider the ‘facilities’ and communities around you. You might belong to a great church, or have a great yoga class. You might know of a really good podcast. Note them down too.
If you feel like nothing is really going particularly well, look for the small details which might seem insignificant. Even having the desire for a spiritual quiet time is an achievement.
Question 2: What are my strengths?
You might phrase this question about gifts, or things you enjoy. What are the things that you are good at, spiritually speaking? What do you enjoy doing to focus on your spirit? What do you enjoy doing?
Question 3: What would I like to develop?
Next, I’d like you to look at the spiritual aspects of your life where you’d like to grow. It might be having time to devote daily to prayer and Bible study. You might like to serve in a different way. Perhaps you could connect with others in another way?
I want you to limit yourself to 3 things for this question. Personally, I’d have a really long list of things I’d like to develop if I did this without limits. I’d get overwhelmed and feel hopeless! So limit yourself to three things that you want to develop.
Question 4: What are the barriers to me developing this?
Be honest here. I expect for most of us, the barriers will be time. Hopefully, your routines will have really helped with this. If you’ve got children who wake up at 5am (like my youngest), you’ll know that an early-morning prayer time is pretty much impossible. If you have children who are at home all the time, but don’t nap, you’ll know that sometimes the only way you get a moment’s peace is in the car when they’ve fallen asleep – but you’ll pay for it later when they won’t go to sleep! Hopefully, I’ll get the time to write a separate post on this, but for now, write it down and acknowledge it.
Other barriers might be a lack of knowledge, a lack of confidence, or a lack of opportunity. Perhaps your husband or partner isn’t supportive. Acknowledge this, and write it down.
Question 5: What opportunities do I have?
I think this is an interesting question to ask yourself. When we stop and examine our lives, it often proves that we have more opportunities than barriers. Perhaps there is a course starting at church? Perhaps you could sign up to The Organised Life Project mailing list and join the Facebook group? Perhaps there’s a conference soon? Perhaps you volunteer? Perhaps you have a group of friends you can talk to about this?
Note down all the opportunities you have to develop spiritually. You might surprise yourself.
This Spiritual Self-Assessment is your starting point. As you are doing this, it may well be that solutions come to mind. I’d actually suggest taking each question 1 at a time (I’ll be posting them daily on my Facebook Page and on Twitter). As you mull the question over in your mind, often you will start thinking of things that aren’t immediately obvious.
If you choose, you could take a different survey, such as the ones below.
The Next Step
Next, we’re going to set some spiritual goals.