What is Workplace Spirituality?

Dina Steiner, Founder and Director of Spirit at Work ATX

In traditional American culture, the words “workplace” and “spirituality” don’t seem to go together. After all, the workplace is a public domain, valued for its inclusivity and diversity. Spirituality, most people reason, is a private affair, deeply personal and not something to be talked about or shared at work. This is especially true if one defines “spirituality” as “religion.”

But spirituality is about more than religion. Generally, spirituality is defined as something that brings transcendence to one’s life, takes one out of the daily flow, and gives one meaning and purpose. For some people, it might music, art, nature, relationships with other people, service to others, or a particular philosophy. For others, spirituality can be their religion, faith or particular spiritual practice such as meditation, yoga or reiki.

At Spirit at Work, we focus on three particular areas of workplace spirituality: 1) meaningful work, 2) a culture of support and 3) an alignment of personal values and corporate values. We believe that a healthy workplace culture needs to have a holistic view of the employee – as mind, body and spirit – and actively seek to support each area. Holistically healthy people are able to bring their whole selves to work. 

This blog will regularly explore the intersection of spirituality and the workplace, examining best practices and research, and encouraging the creation of a more spiritual workplace to enhance employee satisfaction and cohesiveness. In the meantime, I encourage my readers to focus on their own spiritual journey and remember the words of the philosopher and theologian, Pierre Teilhard de Chardin,

“We are not human beings having a spiritual experience. We are spiritual beings having a human experience.”

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