when i was growing up it meant forcing myself to play the piano whether or not i wanted to. it wasn’t my own idea and since it felt forced, it gave kind of a negative connotation to the word.
now that i find myself planning an entire retreat around the concept, "practice" has taken on a very different feel. a feel that is positive and helpful, even life-enhancing. because i have come to believe (through both my own experience and observation of others) that not only do practices provide structure and discipline to our lives, but they can move us forward creatively and spiritually on our life journeys.
my own definition of practice is this: something you engage in regularly to enhance creative and/or spiritual growth and well-being.
the use of practices in my life has been evolving. we have to do what works for us. i don’t think once we begin a practice that it’s mandatory to do it forever. or certainly that you should beat yourself up if you miss a day or more. but once it’s established it does become so much easier to do whatever it is.
i have been compiling a list of practices. there are some shown here, but i know there are lot more that i could add. if you would care to share what practice has been helpful for you, i would love to hear it! i love the idea of sharing our experiences in this area. as always, we have so much to learn from each other!